Understanding, measuring and reporting our impact on the Environment
At Nokia we look at the environmental impact of our activities as we create, design, produce and distribute our products and services. This involves us measuring and reporting the impact of our company operations, products and services. Typically, this impact is related to our use of energy, and of scarce natural resources including materials, water and chemicals.
We look to understand the impact of our suppliers and partners
Because we outsource parts of our production process, it is not enough to just look at our own production facilities. We engage in regular monitoring and audits to ensure that our suppliers and partners are doing what they said they would do. We have robust risk management processes in place, and we meet or where possible exceed the regulatory requirements of the countries that we operate in.
This knowledge allows us to work with our customers to help them understand both their own impact, as well as examine further opportunities to make a positive change. This is important because the past ten years has seen a huge rise in data consumption with more energy and materials needed to cater to that data growth as well as make the devices and equipment that help us consume that data. The telecommunications industry therefore must continually manage its’ own impact, but more importantly it is critical to enabling digitalization and enhanced connectivity which can have a much greater enabling effect in helping other industries and society reduce their carbon footprint.
Handprint vs Footprint
At Nokia we focus on the impact of our technology and digitalization on the world. We therefore look to maximize our positive impact on society, people and the planet - our handprint. An example here would be for our industrial enterprise customers, where we can provide private networks and solutions to help drive greater efficiency and lower carbon emissions. Another example here would be in agriculture where we can help improve yields through the use of networks and data analytics while reducing the use of water, energy and emissions.
We also work continually to minimize our potential negative impact – our footprint. In Fixed Networks, our Quillion chipset reduces energy consumption, with some 50% less power needed in fiber installations than previous generations. In IP Networks, our FP5 silicon chipset can provide a 75 percent reduction in power consumption over previous generations. In Mobile Networks we are committed to halving our base station power consumption by 2023 from 2019 levels and have introduced a liquid cooling system which can reduce base station CO2 emissions by up to 80%.
What does the future hold?
Responsibility sits with everyone. Companies will need to continue to innovate and help provide system-level change with new business models and services. We see this at an individual level for example with the digitalization of city services and the rise of the sharing economy where digital services can augment or replace physical services. This shows us that sustainability doesn’t need to mean just selfless sacrifice but can mean doing things differently.
On the regulatory side, climate reporting is moving from voluntary to being required by law. This is one of the issues driving an increased awareness in our customers. Our customers are asking for product-specific supply chain data which is expected to become mandatory with the EU digital passport in the coming years. We will move to a world in which nearly every company of a certain size will be reporting carbon emissions and material usage providing greater transparency and comparability for the investor community and the value chain.
A bigger question which I’ll leave you with is the more profound one of where digitalization can bring the best benefits for us all and how can we measure the impact accordingly?