18.10.2021 NEWS

How O2 are Building a Greener Network

O2 started their renewable energy procurement process back in 2008, and since then, they have invested £400 million in renewable energy sources. They want to reduce supply chain emissions by 30% into 2025, too. That will mean working with the wider organisation to put ambitious targets in place that encourage suppliers to accelerate their efforts to reduce emissions. That’s why Active Digital is working towards being carbon neutral by 2025, including a paperless office. Through our long and trusted partnership with O2, we are working together to create a greener future.

Network Improvements

In recent years, O2 have totally overhauled 12 strategic data centres and switch sites with new, energy-efficient cooling equipment. The new equipment uses natural cool air to cool down network equipment when needed, rather than electric-powered AC. By upgrading their main cooling plant at their head office in Slough, O2 will save 396 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Furthermore, all O2’s new and upgraded radio technology is designed in the most carbon efficient manner. Their networks use advanced automation to give us a ‘smart turn-off’ function. By dropping capacity when demand is low, it saves the network over 6,000 megawatt hours of energy every year. Their networks use advanced automation to give us a ‘smart turn-off’ function. By dropping capacity when demand is low, it saves the network over 6,000 megawatt hours of energy every year. Plus, O2 are conscious to dispose of all old network infrastructure in environmentally compliant ways.

An Energy Efficient Future

O2 is a forward thinking, evolving network. Their 5G network enables more devices to be connected, using less energy than it would if they were connected over their 4G network. In this way, it is the most energy-efficient network yet. Increased spectrum holding, infrastructure refresh for 5G, and new sites where needed, will provide a large boost to Network Capacity; whilst being Cost, Equipment and Energy Efficient The application of 5G and connected technology, such as smart grids and autonomous vehicles, could see the UK save up to 269 mega tonnes of CO2 by 2035, almost equivalent to England’s total emissions in 2018 (280 mega tonnes).

Heating our houses and powering the myriad of devices that keep Britain moving has a significant energy cost, but 5G could reduce this by enabling reliable and ultra-fast communication between machines, powering next-generation smart meters to enable households to track and reduce their consumption. Furthermore, the utilities and home energy sector could see the greatest benefit, as up to 181 mega tonnes of CO2 could be removed from the sector by 2035.

A statement on behalf of O2 said, “we are putting a stake in the ground. We want to go further and faster, setting the bar in our industry to tackle climate change and build the greenest network for our customers. Every office, every store, every mast. We will get the changes done to be a Net Zero Business by 2025. O2 will work with suppliers, partners and customers to ensure that this industry plays its part in delivering a greener country for us all.”
Additionally, Hugh Jones, Managing Director, Business Services, The Carbon Trust, commented “We are pleased to have worked with O2 for over a decade most recently providing advice on the reduction of their supply chain emissions by 30% by 2025. This is a crucial step in helping the company achieve its ambitions”

Four Steps Towards a Greener Network:

O2 have been working hard for over a decade to help tackle climate change including:
• Smart Network: Using advanced automation, O2’s networks operate on a ‘smart turn-off’ function – saving energy by dropping capacity when demand is low, saving over 6,000 megawatt hours of energy, the same amount of energy required to make 360 million cups of tea.

• Renewable energy: O2 started its renewable energy procurement in 2008. Since this time, it has invested £400 million in renewable energy sources.

• Recycling: Since 2009, O2 has helped customers recycle over three million devices and saved 450 tonnes of waste from landfill. This is the longest-running major UK network recycling initiative. O2 also recycles old retail uniforms turning them into ‘processed fibre’ used to make new product.

• Customer-facing initiatives: O2 was the first to introduce an Eco rating scheme for new phones, and to work with manufacturers to take chargers out of the box on new device sales. The Telefónica Group has been included on the CPD A-list for six consecutive years, the non-profit’s independent survey which recognises corporate leaders acting to address environmental risks. The company also leads the telecom sector in terms of sustainable financing. Telefónica successfully issued the first green bond in Jan 2019 and the first hybrid bond in Jan 2020, amounting to €1 bn and €500 million, respectively. In addition, Telefónica reduced CO2 emissions by 18% in the last year – a 50% reduction in four years. 100% of the electricity in its main markets comes from renewable sources.

Are you ready to switch your business to a greener mobile network with Active Digital?

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