Best Business Neighbor Award-Finalist, FedEx

Finalist: FedEx

FedEx launched EarthSmart Outreach to support the development of sustainable U.S. cities through the conservation and restoration of parks, waterways, and green spaces.

Investments in sustainable development provide recreation and valuable ecosystem services, like clean air and water. Outreach projects are a critical component of the FedEx EarthSmart commitment to sustainable business practices.

All projects leverage charitable dollars, expertise, and volunteer support from FedEx team members to make communities sustainable.

In 2010, FedEx supported urban conservation projects in six cities, expanding to 12 cities in 2011. Projects executed in Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, Memphis, Chicago, Indianapolis, Pittsburgh, Boston, New York City, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. These included tree plantings, green roof installations, schoolyard greening programs and waterway clean-ups.

FedEx also combined its expertise in disaster relief to support natural habitats impacted by disaster. After the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation requested that FedEx transport endangered sea turtle eggs facing a 100% mortality rate.

FedEx donated the dedicated use of a temperature-controlled truck to transport 278 nests containing 25,000 eggs from the Gulf to an incubation center where the turtles hatched and were released into the Atlantic.

The Business Strategy

All EarthSmart Outreach programs have identifiable environmental, workplace and business outcomes. Projects demonstrate a measurable reduction in carbon, improved water or air quality, or enhanced urban wildlife.

All EarthSmart Outreach programs have identifiable environmental, workplace and business outcomes. Projects demonstrate a measurable reduction in carbon, improved water or air quality, or enhanced urban wildlife.

Programs also provide opportunities for FedEx team members to learn about the local ecosystem and the company’s commitment to sustainable business practices. Finally, investments improve relationships between FedEx and government officials in U.S. cities and within federal agencies.

FedEx contributions also leverage funding from government agencies, including the EPA, along with private funding and non-profit partners.

Over the past two years, FedEx team members:

  • Cleared invasive plant species in Memphis, Seattle, San Francisco and Philadelphia
  • Planted trees in Indianapolis, Pittsburgh and Boston
  • Installed rain gardens in New York and Washington, D.C.
  • Cleared trash and planted native vegetation along waterways in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Dallas


EarthSmart Outreach projects are measured by the following success criteria:

  • Benefit the environment: Reduce carbon, improve water quality or enhance wildlife protection.
  • Mobilize the community: Mobilize people, organizations, government, or communities to take action, change behaviors or influence policies.
  • Engage team members: Leverage FedEx team member skills, expertise, and volunteer time.\
  • Enhance the FedEx brand: Align to the FedEx brand and contribute to the corporation’s commitment to the community, the environment, and being a great place to work.

Below are the benefits of this initiative and data FedEx tracked on the programs:

Urban Restoration

ENVIRONMENT: FedEx planted over 14,000 trees (300,000 lb annual reduction of carbon), removed 45 tons of trash from waterways, and helped reduce 250,000 gallons of water runoff, improving the air and water quality for U.S. cities.

COMMUNITY: FedEx engaged 750 community volunteers and donated $200,000 matched by $100,000 by NFWF and $750,000 in local funds, totaling $1 million of investment.

TEAM MEMBERS: Over 300 FedEx team members volunteered for 6 U.S. projects in 2010. For 2011, 500 or more FedEx team members will volunteer for 12 projects.

Gulf Turtle Rescue

ENVIRONMENT: FedEx moved more than 25,000 sea turtle eggs, resulting in nearly 15,000 hatchings – a 50%+ survival rate, slightly higher than the wild.

COMMUNITY: FedEx engaged a “social community” through various channels. We increased Facebook “likes” by 250% and comments by 25% during rescue. FedEx Blog views increased 423% during rescue with a 3800% increase in comments.

TEAM MEMBERS: FedEx Custom Critical managed the end-to-end delivery. Global Citizenship, Animal Help Desk, and Communications supported the effort.

EarthSmart Outreach strengthens the FedEx reputation as a socially responsible and caring corporate citizen among team members, customers, community leaders, and government officials. The initiative also shows that FedEx is committed to sustainable business practices, supporting communities in need, and collaborating with government agencies.