University Mail Services (UMS) collects, processes and distributes nearly three million pieces of incoming United States Postal Service (USPS) mail each year. Of that three million, 50 percent, or 1.5 million pieces, is undeliverable and/or unwanted commercial mail. This unsolicited mail can be time-consuming and costly for UMS to handle and unwelcome to campus departments and employees who may receive such mailings frequently.
In an effort to reduce this significant amount of mail waste — the majority of which is immediately placed in recycling bins — the University has adopted an official Waste-Free Mail Policy. By adopting the Waste-Free Mail Policy, the University can expect to see a reduction of nearly 538,000 pounds (or nearly 270 tons) in paper waste each year.
The new policy puts measures in place to correct undeliverable addresses, remove unwanted mailing pieces, identify individuals who prefer digital instead of printed delivery and remove names of people who are no longer at the University from mailing lists.
The University recognizes that some commercial mail is wanted and necessary. The University is partnering with Waste-Free Mail (www.wastefreemail.com) as a resource which will enable campus distribution. Individuals can go online to review the policy, the program outline and receive training on how the program works. Please go to https://aux-services.unc.edu/mail/sustainability/ and review the sections titled Waste-Free Mail Connect and Waste-Free Mail 2.0.
Read the Waste-Free Mail Policy.