O2 Carbon Footprint Verified By Carbon Trust

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Wants to become the UK’s most energy-efficient network

O2 says that the carbon footprint of making a five minute phone call is the equivalent of making one cup of tea.

The mobile operator made the claim while announcing that it was the first network to have its carbon footprint independently verified by the Carbon Trust.

Smaller footprint

© adimas - Fotolia.comWorking together with the Carbon Trust, O2 calculated the greenhouse gas emissions embedded throughout the entire lifecycle of its voice and data services. This analysis revealed that the carbon footprint of making a one minute voice call is 3.2g CO2e and transferring one megabyte of data results in 11g CO2e.

This means that a five minute call is the carbon equivalent (carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases) of boiling 250ml of water to make a cup of tea.

O2 says that the independent certification demonstrates its commitment to sustainability and reiterated the importance of its Think Big Blueprint plan, which aims to deliver carbon benefits to its customers that are 10 times the impact of the network by 2015.

“Our aim is to develop the UK’s most carbon-efficient network, putting our own operations under the microscope and looking for ways to reduce the footprint we leave on the world,” said Gareth Rice, head of environment at O2. “By evaluating our impact in conjunction with the Carbon Trust we feel we are doing just that.”

The operator says that mobile services account for the majority of its carbon emissions and says that a survey carried out by the Carbon Trust revealed that 56 percent of UK consumers would show more loyalty to brands that could provide evidence of action on carbon.

In 2009, O2 became the first UK mobile operator to be awarded the Carbon Trust standard and in August 2010 launched an ‘eco-rating’ scheme to help customers choose a sustainable phone.

Earlier this year, O2 held a flexible working pilot ahead of the expected transport chaos during this summer’s Olympic Games. The company ordered all but 125 of its 2,500 strong workforce to work from home on 8 February, reducing carbon emissions by 12.2 tonnes and saving its employees 2,000 hours of commuting time.

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