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Vodafone publishes its climate transition plan

At Vodafone, we are committed to playing our part in addressing the climate crisis and helping to drive the transition towards a low-carbon future for our planet and its people.

We have ambitious goals to reduce our own greenhouse gas emissions. We offer products and services, including IoT, that have enormous potential to accelerate greenhouse gas emissions reduction and help people adapt to our changing climate.

Net zero is when the amount of greenhouse gas we add to the atmosphere is balanced by the amount we take away.

Our targets are validated by the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). This year, we also kept our place on the CDP “A-list” for climate change and our commitment to continued transparency in our disclosures.

It’s important to publish and validate credible, stretching goals. But we must match our ambition with action, backed by a clearly defined plan that will keep us on a pathway to net zero.

So today I am proud that Vodafone has published its first Climate Transition Plan (CTP). This sets out the actions we will take to drive progress towards net zero over FY 2025-27. Our CTP also shows how we will manage climate-related risks and opportunities, building climate resilience into our business.

Businesses and governments alike are facing the question of how to turn their climate goals into concrete action. Our Climate Transition Plan has given us the framework to do this. We have created detailed plans to deliver emission reductions, assessing the trade-offs required and setting up supporting internal structures.

We have developed our CTP following the framework set out in October 2023 by the UK Transition Plan Taskforce. This is the latest available best practice benchmark, and it aligns well with our priorities for planning our own climate transition.

There are also large regional differences where we operate, including energy supply and the availability of renewals. As a result, we have decided that our European and African climate change roadmaps need to run at different speeds towards our overall net zero 2040 target.

We can only achieve our ambitions by collaborating with our suppliers and customers, our telecoms industry peers, and with governments and citizens in our markets. We will share lessons learned with our partners and stakeholders so we can continue the journey together. We expect to publish the next iteration of our plan in 2027.

Our Climate Transition Plan will help us meet our own Net Zero goals. It also underlines how our digital connectivity and technology are important solutions for businesses, and for governments and society at large.

Our Protecting the Planet strategy centres on three key areas: net zero, enablement and circularity.

We continue to make progress against increasing our net zero targets. Our focus is on more efficient use of energy, phasing out fossil fuels and renewable sources of energy for our equipment and vehicle fleets.

Improving our energy efficiency is a priority for Vodafone. Our networks and technology centres alone account for 93% of our global energy consumption. This year, we invested €31 million in energy efficiency and onsite renewable projects.

But they are still 20% above our 2020 baseline, and we will endeavour to drive improvements.

100% of the grid electricity used in our European network, and 84% globally, is matched with electricity from renewable sources. In Africa, a new a ‘virtual wheeling’ agreement with Eskom now allows Vodacom to buy renewable electricity from independent producers.

In Europe, we continued to source a greater proportion of our electricity though power purchase agreements (PPAs) with renewable generators in Germany, Greece, Portugal, and the UK. These PPAs currently deliver around 24% of our grid electricity in Europe. When they are fully operational from 2026, they will generate approximately 39% of our European grid electricity.

This year, we have enabled the avoidance of an estimated 32.8 million tCO2e – around 75 times the emissions generated from our own operations. Since setting our target in 2020, we’ve helped our customers avoid a cumulative 78.3 million tCO2e. In FY24, we estimate that 55% of our 186.8 million IoT connections directly enabled our customers to reduce their emissions.

In FY24, we reused, resold, or recycled 96% of our network waste, excluding hazardous waste. Our asset marketplace played a role in helping us trade spare or redundant equipment between our markets, or across the telecoms industry.

CT Bureau

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