Elisa commits to being carbon neutral this year and to shut off 3G network in 2023

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The Finnish operator aims for carbon neutrality this year – the first Nordic telco to do so – and says it will switch off its 3G network by 2023 to invest more in 4G and 5G.

All the electricity used by the company is renewable and the rest of the emissions – including staff’s commutes and mobility plus network backup power, which totals some 11% of emissions – will be offset.

It will acquire carbon offset credits through the Gold Standard-certified improved cookstoves project.

“Climate change now requires effective action also from businesses, and we want to contribute to the faster achievement of a carbon neutral society. In addition to our own energy efficiency measures, we can impact the change right now, with certified offset credits.

“Emission reduction has been part of our strategy for more than ten years. This represents one step on the journey aiming to make our entire energy consumption carbon neutral,” says Elisa’s CEO, Veli-Matti Mattila.

Elisa’s carbon footprint has decreased by more than 60% since 2016. The sustainability measures include renewable electricity, network optimisation and increasingly energy efficient new technologies as well as the use of data centres’ waste heat in the district heating network. 

The Elisa Ideal Work operating model and opportunities for location-independent work have also significantly reduced employees' travel and emissions.

Turning 3G off

Separately the operator said it plan to shut off 3G in 2023, as the use of 3G is already very limited and that in general, the move will not require a change of devices except in rare cases such as old hunting cameras and tablets that are more than ten years old. Some corporate customer systems, such as some payment terminals, also use the 3G network.

“It is clear that we need to transfer capacity to modern networks to meet the needs of our customers. The importance of 5G will only increase through this change,” said Elisa Vice President of Network Services, Sami Rajamäki.