Telecom operators: COVID-19 network traffic surge is not impacting environment

The GSMA surveyed a number of large operator members to gauge the environmental impact of the surge in online services, i.e. videoconferencing and entertainment streaming. In most cases, network electricity usage remained flat despite the 50% surge in voice-over-IP and data traffic. ‘As an industry we can be proud of network connectivity that is enabling societies and economies in these challenging times without increasing our environmental footprint. Our sector will form the backbone to the future global economy and has a unique role to play in reaching a Net Zero carbon economy,’ noted GSMA Director General Mats Granryd. Recently, the information and communication technology (ICT) sector set a Science-Based Pathway that will allow mobile, fixed, and data centre operators to reduce emissions in line with the Paris Agreement. For example, mobile operators adopting the target are required to reduce emissions by at least 45% by 2030.