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Saturday, May 3, 2008

Probably the Worlds Most Environmentally Conscious Telco

IT World Canada has just published an article based on research by Lawrence Surtees, vice-president of communications research and principal analyst at Toronto-based research firm IDC Canada Ltd.

Despite my references below to the complementary comments made by a number of speakers at the CERES Conference on April 30th, Lawrence Surtees describes a different picture when it comes to telcos that I cannot resist highlighting.
"Despite this, North American telcos tend to “lag way behind” European ones in terms of green approaches, and drilling down even further, Canada remains behind the U.S.," he said. "The fact that Canada has abundant hydro is likely a reason carbon footprint reduction is relatively less of a priority," he added.

The U.K.-based company BT PLC – which Surtees described as “probably the world’s most environmentally conscious” telco – has set a goal of deriving more than 60 per cent of electricity from renewable wind energy for all of its U.K.-based operations. It’s a great case of “farsighted thinking and what’s possible today”, thinks Surtees, and it ought to serve as a wake-up call to other telcos especially those in North America.

You can read the whole article here.

Actually Lawrence gives us more credit than we are due. Our wind farms programme is aimed at generating 25 per cent (rather than 60%) of all BT’s energy needs by 2016. That said, it is still the UK’s biggest corporate wind power project outside the energy sector. BT has so far installed eight met masts - meteorological towers that measure the scale and direction of wind to help the planning and deployment of wind farms. They will be in place for up to a year and applications have been submitted for planning permission for many more.

We have reduced our UK carbon footprint by 60% since 1996 and we have an objective to reduce it by 80% by 2016.

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