UAE telco e& commits to net-zero emissions by 2030 at COP27

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United Arab Emirates telecoms operator and technology conglomerate e&, formerly known as Etisalat Group, pledged its commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by 2030 at the COP27 UN climate summit in Egypt on Wednesday.

The conglomerate said in a statement that it plans to reduce its carbon footprint through energy efficiency and sourcing renewable energy, among other key initiatives.

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e&’s climate action program is in line with the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTI) – a collaboration between the United Nations Global Compact, the Carbon Disclosure Project, and the World Resources Institute to set an emissions reduction trajectory between 2020 and 2030 for all information and communications technology sub-sectors.

The program aims to set out a clear roadmap which includes a range of sustainability initiatives that will ensure a positive impact on societies and on e&’s future plans and operations.

“Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do. Our sustainability plans and ambitions are aligned to support the UAE’s Net Zero 2050 Strategic Initiative and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), as well as our commitment to the GSMA’s initiative to take the entire mobile industry to net zero carbon emissions by 2050,” said e&’s Group CEO Hatem Dowidar in a statement.

“We are working closely with our partners and stakeholders to create solutions that turn ideas into action. Through our commitment to enabling a low-carbon society, we will ramp up our efforts to address pressing issues such as climate action, environmental conservation, as well as the provision of safe, efficient and environmentally friendly products and services that help mitigate climate change.”

The UAE has the highest fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) penetration in the world and has managed to maintain this position since 2016.

Over the past decade, e& has invested heavily in fiber optic infrastructure, which has technical and environmental advantages over traditional networks.

The group’s current operations focus on best practices of reducing energy consumption, minimizing waste and developing sustainable architecture to achieve a positive environmental impact.

“We [the UAE] pledge to reach net zero emissions by 2050, as the first country in the MENA region, knowing that deploying sustainable and clean technologies and investing in renewable energy projects in developing countries will enable us to contribute more effectively to the future of humanity,” said the UAE’s Minister of Climate Change and Environment Mariam bint Mohammed al-Mheiri.

“We are pleased to see a global organization such as e& paving the way for private sector entities around the world to show more commitment and support a real-time transition towards a low-carbon society,” she added.

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