Proactively protect the environment
Digital technologies are revolutionising the world around us, shaking up society, revitalising communities and promoting social inclusion. They also represent a real opportunity for combating climate change. For Orange, this opportunity is also a responsibility: to reduce the Group’s environmental impact and contribute to a smarter and more balanced planet.
Reducing our own environmental impact
At Orange, we believe that ICT can play an effective role in fighting against the depletion of natural resources and climate change.
At COP21, held in Paris at the end of 2015, we made a concrete and ambitious commitment: reduce CO2 emissions by half for customer uses by 2020 (in relation to 2006). To achieve this we identified how much greenhouse gas our activities produced through carbon audits in France, Belgium, Spain and Poland. Networks and IT systems accounted for 68% of our CO2 emissions. A comprehensive Green ITN 2020 action plan was drawn up with measures to reduce energy consumption. These include optimising our data centers (which host our IT servers) with more efficient electrical equipment, replacing old servers and increasing network virtualisation.
We are fully engaged in the use of renewable energies. By the end of 2016, more than 2,800 solar powered relay antennas were operational in Africa and the Middle East. At Orange Jordan, a solar power plant will ultimately cover all the electricity needs of our subsidiary, which will therefore avoid the emission of 40,000 tonnes of CO2 each year
In parallel, we are committed to the circular economy by limiting our impact on natural resources between now and 2020. This means we are moving our business model towards new modes of design, manufacturing and consumption: from protecting scarce resources to recycling and reusing equipment. Since 2015, Orange has been a member of the "100 Circular Economy" program initiated by the Ellen Macarthur Foundation.
- 214 millions litres of fuel saved between 2010 and 2016 in the 19 countries where the Group is present
- +48 % reduction in our total CO2 emissions for customer uses in 2016, compared to 2006
- 54,852 tonnes of waste recycled in 2016
- Orange owns the 1st private car-sharing fleet in France
- 70% reduction in data center energy consumption thanks to server virtualization
Involving our partners
Along with our own efforts to reduce CO2 emissions, Orange is working to decrease its overall environmental footprint throughout its supply chain in close collaboration with suppliers, service providers and partners.
Orange promotes infrastructure sharing with other operators, a solution that significantly reduces the overall telecommunications carbon footprint.
We also work closely with our suppliers to design innovative telecommunications equipment that is less energy intensive than the equipment we use today. For example, our first joint project with Huawei led to a 10% reduction in energy consumption by evolving the software functionality in our mobile networks, and we’ll be continuing to work together through our partnership agreement signed in 2015. Furthermore, research into 5G energy efficiency has led to new collaboration agreements signed with Nokia and Ericsson in 2016 and 2017.
In addition, we ask all of our suppliers to integrate electricity meters into their equipment design so that we can monitor our consumption in real time. We aim to reduce our reliance on materials from scarce or critical resources when it comes to electronic equipment manufacturing. That’s why we encourage our suppliers to trace the origin of each material and promote transparency in their own supply chain. In consultation with them, we’re actively researching new materials that we can use instead of depleting scarce resources.
Promoting energy and ecological transition
In a world of finite natural resources, everyone can contribute effectively to protecting the environment. We help our customers reduce their environmental impact on a daily basis through new technologies.
Before buying a mobile phone for example, you can read its eco rating. This rating runs from 1 to 5 (5 being the most positive score), and is available in-store or online. It takes into account environmental criteria such as preserving natural resources and limiting CO2 emissions during the manufacturing process. It’s up to you to choose the most eco-friendly!
There is now no excuse to throw away an old phone: you can give it a second life by recycling it via the mobile collectors available in all of our shops. Our target is to collect 30% of all used mobiles in Europe by 2020 – today it is 15.3% – through commercial incentives and eco-citizen initiatives. At the same time we want to develop our sales of used and refurbished devices.
In Africa we offer several collection and recycling workshops through our collaboration with Emmaüs International that started in 2010. We have collected more than 1.8 million mobile devices throughout the Group, equivalent to 250 tonnes.
Orange is a player in the digital transition by promoting the electronic bill for landline, mobile, internet and TV. With the application Orange and me, it is possible to control its consumption, view and download its invoices.
Finally, we are committed to raising awareness of environmental issues among our personal and business customers, for example through the MOOC on biodiversity, which we launched in 2017.