Outlining our commitment to tackling the climate emergency - Neos Networks

Outlining our commitment to tackling the climate emergency

Written by James Milner-Smith, Director of Governance and Assurance

EV charging

If you’ve switched on the news just once in the past week, then you will have undoubtedly caught reports on this year’s annual UN Climate Change Conference – COP26. Hosted in the UK, global leaders are gathering to address our very real and urgent climate emergency. Some have billed this conference as the last real chance for the world to unite on an agreed plan to inspire action in order to tackle climate change.

Net Zero by 2030

Over the past year, the UK government has outlined its own plans to make the UK a leading green economy. Initiatives like the ten-point green plan outlined the steps for a green industrial revolution and more recently its Net Zero strategy to “Build Back Greener” summarised the government’s commitment to reaching net zero emissions by 2050.

Technology can be a fundamental enabler of a much greener, more efficient future, and the tech and telecoms industries have a vital role to play in addressing sustainability and reducing their impact on our planet to prolong quality of life for generations to come. According to a recent Ericsson report, 5G will be critical in supporting Europe to achieve its climate targets, potentially reducing CO2 emissions by 15% by 2030. So how can we ensure we capitalise on the opportunity to use technology for good while ensuring our industry, technologies and solutions do not leave their mark on our planet?

At Neos Networks, we want to contribute towards building a sustainable future. As such, we have committed to aligning carbon emissions with the Paris Agreement and Science Based Targets Initiative in order to achieve our ambition of net zero by 2030. If, as a collective society, we don’t act quickly to do more to transition to a low-carbon economy, we will push past a point of no return which will have devastating effects on our planet. Neos Networks is aware of the part we have to play, and we are ready for the challenge.

How are we doing our bit?

Our ongoing carbon reduction plan measures the emissions produced by our office, exchanges, data centres, and as a result of our business travel. At our offices we’ve implemented Electric Vehicle (EV) charging points, more efficient lighting controls and recently we renewed our IT equipment, so it is to the highest energy efficiency rating available to reduce our footprint. Through more flexible working practices, we’re encouraging our teams to travel more economically, for example we provide loans to employees that want to take up our cycle to work scheme.

As part of our efforts to achieve our net zero pledge, we will decarbonise our vehicle fleet by 2030. In fact, 100% of all new company vehicles and all hired vehicles up to 3.5t will be decarbonised from 2025. Renewable energy will be top of the agenda at COP26, and we have committed to change all Energy Tariffs at Neos Networks properties to certified “100% Green Energy Tariffs” before 2024. We also realise that legacy systems and old equipment and infrastructure still running on our network are inefficient and harmful to the planet. That’s why we have created a £6m fund dedicated to the network obsolescence programme, to rip and replace outdated, energy-hungry equipment with economical technology that supports our network’s future green approach to growth.

Green connectivity

We have deliberately aligned our carbon reduction plan with our values, and we project that our carbon emissions baselined in 2019 at 5661 tCO2e will decrease to substantially less than 2000 tCO2e by 2024. As the world looks to what will come out of COP26 in the coming weeks, we believe all industries have a responsibility to action change that will have a lasting, positive impact on the environment. As a supporter and enabler of critical infrastructure and business connectivity across the UK we have a key role to play in improving efficiency and supporting our transition to a greener, more sustainable future.

You can read more about our net zero 2030 pledge and future measures here, or if you’d like more information please get in touch.

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