Telekom Logo
Act responsibly. Enable sustainability.

Our approach for energy-efficient networks

We operate our own fixed-line and mobile networks in Europe and the United States. The majority of our energy requirements come from operating this network infrastructure. In the interest of our customers, we continue to increase the capacity and performance of our networks so that we can handle growing amounts of data and improve the speed and quality of data transmission. However, this also means higher energy requirements. In order to reduce our energy needs, we are pursuing the following approaches:

  • We are updating our network infrastructure, e.g., by migrating to IP img technology and removing equipment we no longer need.
  • We are optimizing energy generation and supply with the help of technical innovation.
  • We are working on firmly embedding the aspect of “energy efficiency” in the architecture and design phase of new technology selection through specifications and requirements.
  • We use energy-efficient technology not just for our networks, but also for lighting, monitoring, and – most importantly – cooling our systems. Our internal energy service provider, Power & Air Solutions, whose energy management has been ISO 50001 img certified since 2013, plays a key role in these activities.

Andreas Kröhling

Do you have questions on this topic?
Ask our expert:

Andreas Kröhling

Energy intensity ESG KPI Deutsche Telekom Group KPI

Since 2016, we have reported on the Energy Intensity ESG  KPI img. In contrast to the existing Energy Consumption ESG img KPI, the new ESG KPI shows energy consumption in proportion to the transmitted data volumes. Using data volume as a reference parameter makes it possible to create a direct link to the performance of our networks.

Our ambition: decrease KPI

Energy intensity ESG KPI Deutsche Telekom Group

  Data assured by PwC. For detailed assurance comments see „DT Group in Germany“ 

The ESG KPI figure also takes into account total energy consumption for all energy sources – fuel, gas, district heating and electricity. The data volume is composed of the transmitted IP img data volumes (including Voice over IP, Internet, IP-TV).

Reporting against standards

The Energy Intensity ESG img KPI is relevant for the GRI indicator GRI 302-3 (Energy Intensity). This information is relevant for EFFAS KPI img E01-01 (Energy consumption, total). It is furthermore relevant for criterion 12 (Resource management) of the German Sustainability Codex. It is also used for reporting on the Global Compact Principles 7 (Precautionary approach) and 8 (Promoting environmental responsibility).

Energy intensity ESG KPI DT Group in Germany KPI

Since 2016, we have reported on the Energy Intensity ESG  KPI img. In contrast to the existing Energy Consumption ESG img KPI, the new ESG KPI places the energy consumption into a ratio with the managed data volumes. Using data volume as a reference parameter makes it possible to create a direct link to the performance of our networks.

Energy intensity ESG KPI DT Group in Germany

   Data assured by PwC. Data is partly based on estimates, assumptions and extrapolations. The calculation method was adjusted in 2017. Values cannot be directly compared to the previous year.

The ESG KPI figure also takes into account total energy consumption for all energy sources – fuel, gas, district heating and electricity. The data volume is composed of the transported IP img data volumes (including IP telephone, internet, IP-TV).

   

Reporting against standards

The Energy Intensity ESG img KPI is relevant for the GRI indicator GRI 302-3  (Energy Intensity). This information is relevant for EFFAS KPI img E01-01 (Energy consumption, total). It is furthermore relevant for criterion 12 (Resource management) of the German Sustainability Codex. It is also used for reporting on the Global Compact Principles 7 (Precautionary approach) and 8 (Promoting environmental responsibility).

Total energy consumption KPI

Total energy consumption indecreased by 1 percent year over year as a result of the rapidly growing data traffic and the corresponding continuous network expansion. In order to achieve our climate goal, we are focusing on areas with especially high energy consumption, such as our networks and data centers. For instance, we are migrating our network infrastructure to IP  technology, which is not only more powerful, but also consumes less electricity than existing technologies.

Data verified by PwC. For detailed audit comments see „DT Group in Germany“ and „T-Mobile US“.

 

Reporting against standards

By reporting our energy consumption from primary energy sources, we partially cover the GRI 302-1 (Energy consumption within the organization) GRI indicator and the E01-01 (Energy consumption, total) EFFAS indicator. By reporting fleet energy consumption, we also partially cover the GRI 307-1 (Environmental impact of transportation) GRI indicator. This data is also relevant for criterion 11 of the German Sustainability Code (Usage of natural resources). It is also used for reporting on the Global Compact  principles 7 (Precautionary approach) and 8 (Promoting environmental responsibility).

Decoupling Power Consumption and CO2 Emissions KPI

Deutsche Telekom was able to reduce the emissions generated by its electricity consumption to zero from 2008 to 2012 by purchasing RECS img certificates (Renewable Energy Certificate System). However, we feel that these certificates have not had as positive an impact on the environment as we had hoped. Demand for certificates was generally limited. As a result, RECS certificates do not make a noticeable contribution to encouraging the expansion of renewable energy sources. That is why we feel it makes more sense both in terms of ecological and economic aspects to invest in reducing our energy consumption and increasing our energy efficiency than to purchase RECS certificates. We are also increasingly purchasing electricity from renewable energies.

Reporting against standards

By providing this information, we fully cover the E16-05 (Alternative energy consumption) EFFAS indicator. This data is also relevant for criteria 3 (Strategic analysis, strategy and goals), 11 and 12 (Usage of natural resources) of the German Sustainability Code. It is also used for reporting on the Global Compact principles 7 (Precautionary approach) and 8 (Promoting environmental responsibility).

Energy efficiency in buildings

Our contribution to the SDGs

Deutsche Telekom in Germany focuses its energy management efforts on energy savings. Accordingly, we continuously monitor and supervise all resources that require energy. Based on this data, we identify where there is potential for increasing efficiency. The goal of energy management is to minimize the primary demand for building electricity and heating energy. Sustainability aspects are crucial for the selection of future energy carriers.

Achieving these goals includes pursuing the following strategies:

  1. Through innovative location and office concepts, we are reducing vacancies and optimizing the use of space in our buildings.
  2. We identify the need for reduction in energy consumption by using specific indicators such as “kilowatt hours per square meter” to compare similar facilities. We also carry out load profile analyses for individual buildings to identify anomalies in their energy consumption.
  3. Through communication measures, we want to raise awareness of energy consumption among our employees and motivate them to be energy-conscious in the workplace.  

The Deutsche Telekom subsidiary Power & Air Solution Management GmbH (PASM img) procures energy for the German Deutsche Telekom Group companies. Its energy management system is certified according to the ISO 50001 international standard. In addition, Deutsche Telekom’s real estate holdings undergo an energy audit according to DIN standard 16247 every four years.

Heating and hot water
We regularly assess the need for repairs at our properties and conduct profitability analyses to further reduce consumption, concentrating on necessary and especially economic measures, such as:

  • Energy optimization of heating systems (e.g., by replacing old burner technologies)
  • Updating heat generators and related hydraulic components (such as pumps and valves)
  • Using waste heat (e.g., by using heat recovery systems)
  • Using combined heat and power generation (e.g., by combined heat and power units)
  • Reducing supply losses when heating water (e.g., by switching to decentralized hot water supply)

Electricity
The supply infrastructure of office buildings accounts for the biggest share of building electricity consumption (e.g., pumps, ventilation and cooling systems, building automation systems, elevators, and lighting). To reduce electricity consumption, we are focusing our measures on the following areas:

  • Using LED lighting and motion sensors
  • Using efficient building technology (e.g., high-efficiency pumps, frequency-dependent ventilation)
  • Optimizing pre-programmed usage profiles (such as through absence profiles)
  • Using efficient building automation systems

Building shell
The energy efficiency of the building shell is critical for all construction and renovation measures. This includes the energy-based design of facades, roofing, doors, and windows.

ESG KPI “PUE” – reduced CO2 generation at data centers KPI

An important indicator for controlling our climate protection measures and the efficiency of our data centers is the annual “Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE img)” value. 

The PUE factor img is an indicator of the increased efficiency of the infrastructure in our data centers. The factor is calculated using the ratio between the total electrical energy consumed by the data center and the amount of electrical energy consumed by IT. We were able to reduce the average global PUE factor at our T-Systems data centers from 1.85 to 1.64 between 2011 and 2019. A reduction from 1.67 to 1.56 was also achieved for Germany between 2008 and 2019.

To reduce CO2 emissions at our data centers (DC), we are optimizing energy consumption at individual data center locations and improving processes throughout the global data center landscape. Our state-of-the-art data centers, e.g., in Munich or Biere, are set up for a PUE value of 1.36 and are therefore much more efficient than the average for German data centers, which lies at about 1.8. We are planning to reduce the PUE factor of our fixed-line network in Germany to 1.4 by the year 2020. For this value, we also forecast an additional reduction in the coming years. This will allow us in part to compensate for increasing energy requirements due to growing volumes of data and new features.

Data centers are becoming more energy-efficient

The “DC11@2018” program ran from 2013 to 2018. Its objective was to combine data center capacity worldwide with the latest IT technology and hence improve energy efficiency. The goal was to achieve an average PUE value of 1.4. To do this, data center space and locations were reduced and existing data center infrastructure was virtualized. This involved decommissioning several old data centers in Germany. At the Biere and Munich data centers and at other international data centers such as the Barcelona site in Spain, air conditioning was optimized.

However, we were not able to achieve the targeted PUE value of 1.4. At the end of 2019, the same figure was 1.64. This is in part due to the gradual shutdown of old data centers, which become less efficient during decommissioning as less capacity is used. Another reason is the commissioning of the newly built Biere data center (second construction phase), which initially produced low efficiency due to low capacity utilization. It is now in the ramp-up phase and efficiency is improving along with increased capacity utilization.

Data centers are becoming more energy-efficient

Additional measures were identified at the end of the “DC11@2018” program. As a result, the follow-up program “Data Center Next” was launched at the beginning of 2019 with the aim of further homogenizing the IT landscape and purposefully optimizing utilization of the data center infrastructure according to IT requirements in order to further improve efficiency. The program utilizes factors that have a positive influence on a data center’s PUE development, such as selective cooling and raising the temperature within the possible range, while taking into account defined limit values.

Our target PUE value for our highly efficient data center in Biere is 1.3. To achieve this target, it will be necessary to adhere to a prescribed temperature range, achieve a capacity utilization of at least 80 percent, and create an IT landscape that is as homogeneous as possible. By taking steps such as migrating data from inefficient data centers to Biere, we achieved a PUE metric there of 1.32 by the end of 2019. The data center was also awarded the respected LEED Gold sustainability certification (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).