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We have been measuring and reducing our carbon footprint with the assistance of the independent climate consultancy firm CO2logic since 2009, long before the Paris Agreement. The experts from CO2logic have accompanied us for many years in the reduction of our CO2 emissions. Our goal: to be Net Zero Carbon by 2040, i.e. 10 years ahead of the deadline set for the sector.
In 2020, we earned, for the 6th consecutive year, the CO2-Neutral label from CO2logic and Vinçotte for our operating activities. Their method is to fully evaluate the environmental impact of companies and then work out a plan and introduce specific reduction measures.
We realised that our CO2 emissions are primarily due to mobility (73%) and infrastructures (23%). So in 2006 we put together an ambitious project focusing on four priorities: limiting energy consumption, encouraging use of green electricity, introducing a smart management of wastes and creating a green car fleet, coupled with a teleworking system. By 2013, this approach had achieved results: our CO2 emissions were cut by 75%. Our current objective is by 2023 to have reduced those emissions by another 30% from their 2019 level.
Concretely, obtaining the CO2-Neutral label means that every call, every text or every bit of mobile data that is transmitted on our network can be regarded as CO2 neutral, so our customers enjoy mobile telephony that has no negative impact in terms of greenhouse gas emissions. Which means that they are reducing their own environmental footprint as well.
We promise to maintain this label, notably by using more efficient technologies, like 5G, but also thanks to the implementation of the mobile access network sharing agreement with Proximus. This partnership allows us to further reduce our network’s energy consumption despite the increasing traffic.
Our CO2 emissions have also been reduced by a less energy-intensive network. In 2019, we notably launched a new, very energy-efficient data centre (one that, all on its own, replaces four smaller structures). The climate control of our offices was replaced by a cooling system that consumes one-tenth as much energy. We also installed low-energy light bulbs in all of our offices and solar panels on the roof. We have plans for reducing energy consumption in our stores and points of sale as well, e.g. by using a centrally-managed database for the opening hours and reducing on-site interventions. We have already drastically cut our paper consumption thanks to the digitalisation of deliverables in our buildings and points of sale, and we have introduced the use of e-invoicing for the same purpose.