Today we have unveiled an ambitious new three year sustainability plan which promises to stimulate social and environmental advancement by delivering up to 4 million tonnes of carbon savings and equipping one million young people with vital skills.
So what’s the plan all about?
The plan sets out, through three key goals and 40 individual commitments, how we will harness our unique understanding of technology and digital connectivity to build a more sustainable future for our customers, employees, suppliers and the communities they live in.
The Think Big Blueprint is built around three core objectives:
• Think Big for planet – a commitment aiming to deliver carbon reductions for customers that are ten times greater than the impact of our network. The pledge is underpinned by 23 individual commitments, including: a promise to halve the emissions of our network*; a commitment to tackle the environmental impact of phone charging by no longer providing chargers as standard with new phones and a promise to ensure all major suppliers take measures to reduce their impact on the environment and increase their community contribution.
• Think Big for customers – an undertaking to help ten million people live in easier and more sustainable ways through our products and services. The pledge is underpinned by 12 individual commitments, including: a promise to save the NHS over 1m hours of health-care staff time equivalent to £50m of savings; a commitment to save 350,000 UK households over 300,000 tonnes of carbon; and flexible working solutions which will save hundreds of UK businesses 160,000 tonnes of carbon emissions.
• Think Big for people – a pledge to help one million young people to develop skills for life and lead community projects across the UK. The pledge is underpinned by 5 individual commitments, including: a promise to help over 600,000 young people develop skills through local community initiatives, funding to support 5,000 young people to lead community projects and the creation of 4,000 high quality work experience opportunities.
What’s our Chief Executive, Ronan Dunne say about the plan?
“A truly sustainable future, in an environmental, social and economic sense, requires businesses like ours, to take bold steps to tackle our shared social and environmental challenges.
“As a leading provider of digital services with in excess of 22 million customers, we are uniquely positioned to use the scale of our business and our understanding of technology, to make sustainable living a reality.
“This blueprint is not simply a ‘nice to have’. In an era of heightened economic and social concern, it’s an essential part of our long term business strategy that will enable us to unlock sustainable growth and encourage positive environmental change.”
How did we arrive at the plan?
It was drafted following an exhaustive year long consultation process, overseen by independent non-profit organization Forum for the Future and involved employees, consumers, suppliers, as well as leading charities and NGOs. Forum for the Future will continue to work with us to monitor, evaluate and report back on progress against each of the 40 commitments contained in the plan.
Founder director, Jonathon Porritt said: “Over the last three years, it’s been really exciting working with O2. We have been struck by the integrity of their approach that has led to significant progress in a number of areas, for example O2 Recycle becoming the third biggest recycling scheme in UK.
“Even in such difficult times, with austerity the order of the day, sustainability keeps on delivering real benefits for customers, communities and shareholders – and we very much look forward to pushing on with those initiatives that are already proving themselves to be game-changers.”
Forum for the Future was also commissioned to review wider opportunities for ICT to contribute to a sustainable society. The results, set out in a report called ‘Connect’ Collaborate, Change’, provides a framework that can be used to maximise the benefits of ICT for sustainability. It also highlights the critical role that individuals have to make radical changes for the better by collaborating with one another.
For more information about O2’s Think Big Blueprint or Forum for the Future’s report, please visit http://o2.co.uk/thinkbig
Notes to Editors
*The commitment to halve network emissions by 50% is relative to increases in data traffic