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  • 2016 Corporate Responsibility Report
2016 Corporate Responsibility Report

Climate strategy

One of our goals is to reduce the environmental impact of our business activities. One important milestone is our climate target: By the year 2020, we are planning to reduce the absolute amount of CO2 emissions we produce by 20 percent compared to base year 2008 (excluding T-Mobile USA). One step in this process is investing in energy-efficient network technology.

And we are concerned with more than just reducing our own carbon footprint. We want to help our customers reduce their CO2 emissions as well. The GeSI img SMARTer2030 study shows that information and communications technology may be part of the solution in the fight against climate change. Products such as our cloud and mobility solutions help reduce the amount of CO2 emissions our customers produce. And we continue to expand our offer of solutions like these.

Our integrated climate strategy

We have bundled our climate protection activities in our integrated climate strategy. Our strategy consists of four climate protection aspects that significantly influence our business activities: CO2 emissions, renewable energy, energy efficiency and sustainable products. We have set goals for all of these aspects and defined KPIs to help us regularly review our progress. Our integrated climate strategy is also tied to our "Leading European Telco" Group strategy, allowing us to effectively integrate climate protection measures into our core business.

The four pillars of our integrated climate strategy

Our goal is to reduce the absolute amount of CO2 emissions we produce throughout the Group. By the year 2020, we are planning to reduce our CO2 emissions by 20 percent compared to base year 2008 (excluding T-Mobile US). To help us achieve this goal, we record all direct and indirect emissions using the globally recognized GHG protocol. By 2016, we were already able to reduce our emissions by 5 percent compared to 2008 in absolute figures.* In Germany we were able to realize a reduction of 6.5 percent in the same period of time. Key forces behind this reduction include using modern building technology and office concepts as well as an efficient vehicle fleet and replacing business trips with audio and video conferences. Initial projections within the scope of our 2016 climate target monitoring show that the broadband expansion in Germany is impacting our CO2 emissions to an unexpected degree and that these are rising above those that we planned in 2013. As soon as we have completed our climate target monitoring activities we will be able to precisely identify these impacts and discuss them as well as any measures that need to be taken with the Group's Board of Management at the end of the year. The results will be presented in the next CR report.

*Data only confirmed by PwC for Germany
CO2 emissions

We are assessing ways to increase the share of green energy in use at our company, e.g., by purchasing guarantees of origin for energy from renewable sources, generating our own renewable energy and introducing carbon pricing. Some national companies are setting a great example: Magyar Telekom in Hungary, T-Mobile Netherlands, and OTE in Greece obtained 100 percent of their electricity from renewable sources in 2016. We have also introduced parameters throughout the Group that can be used to assess electricity procurement in terms of sustainability. These parameters help us make our energy mix more transparent and increase the share of energy obtained from renewable sources at our company. The share of energy from renewable sources in use at the Group was almost 10 percentage points higher on average in 2016 than in the national energy mix of each relevant country*.

* When calculating the share of energy from renewable sources, we also use the share of renewable energy in the country mix, as the (usually lower) share of renewable energy in the residual mix is not available. For Germany, the EEG surcharge paid is taken into account when calculating the share of renewable energy.
Renewable energy

We continue to expand the capacity and performance of our fixed-line and mobile networks to meet the demands that come with rapidly growing data traffic. Because network operation calls for a considerable amount of energy, we are investing in modernization and energy-efficient technology. In order to measure our progress, we introduced two new key performance indicators (KPIs) in 2016. They show our energy consumption Energy Intensity KPI and our carbon footprint Carbon IntensityKPI in proportion to the transmitted data volumes.

Energy efficiency

Many of our products and services provide various sustainability advantages. They can help reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions, improve healthcare and make logistics more efficient and environmentally friendly. In 2015 we generated 39 percent of sales with products and services that provide sustainability advantages such as these while ruling out any significant sustainability risks. This reflects an increase of two percentage points compared to 2014.

Sustainable products

Collaboration for climate protection
Effective climate protection calls for joint efforts on the part of business, politics, science and society. That is why we are involved in a number of German initiatives, such as the 2° Foundation, and international associations. One of these is the Global e-Sustainability Initiative img (GeSI img). As an industry association, GeSI's vision is to help make society greener and more climate-friendly with the help of ICT img solutions.