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  • 2019 Corporate Responsibility Report

Our approach for sustainable products and services

Our contribution to the SDGs

As a telecommunications company, our core business consists of expanding and operating our network. We are using this network to lay the foundations for digital participation and to enable our customers to reduce CO2 emissions with innovative, network-based solutions. To make our core product sustainable, we have set ourselves an ambitious climate target to transform the entire Deutsche Telekom network into a “green network” by 2021. By purchasing electricity from renewable energies our customers will be able to surf the web on a climate-neutral basis. 

Sustainability plays an important role in our other products, too, requiring systematic measures to be implemented across the entire value chain. This is why we begin with procurement: We can thereby ensure that sustainability criteria are met throughout supply chain.

We have our products certified by recognized ecolabels such as the Blue Angel and the TÜV Certified Green Product label. The strict requirements of these labels help us see how we can further improve our products. They also help us inform our customers of the benefits of choosing sustainable products. In 2019, we also launched our “we care” label for Deutsche Telekom products, services, and initiatives.

Even our product packaging is becoming more sustainable. Wherever possible, we use special packaging machines to reduce packaging size. To protect products in the packaging, we will be utilizing more insulating elements made from non-plastic materials.

At the end of a product’s life cycle, we contribute to its reuse or recycling. For example, we regularly carry out used cell phone collection campaigns. Depending on their condition, the mobile devices collected in Germany are properly disposed of and recycled or refurbished and resold. We launched our sustainable cell phone recycling scheme in 2019. We want to actively encourage customers to sell certain cell phones back to us, which we will then refurbish and resell among our client base with a warranty. 

In Germany and several national companies, we offer various subsidized rates to enable customers on a low income and people living with a disability to make calls at reasonable prices.

We measure our progress by means of various KPIs: 

  • We use the Sustainable Revenue Share ESG KPI img to determine the proportion of sales generated with products and services that are classified as sustainable based on a risk-benefit analysis. 
  • We measure the impact of our collection campaigns with our Used Mobile Device Collection ESG KPI.
  • We use the Enablement Factor ESG KPI to calculate the positive CO2 effects generated by customers who are using our products.

Markus Göddertz

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