Cogeco’s plan to reduce its emissions from operations by 65 per cent by 2030 has been approved by the Science-Based Target initiatives (STBi), making it the only telecommunications company in Canada with SBTi-approved targets.

STBi is a multi-organizational partnership for promoting sustainability. Cogeco’s plan is part of a concerted effort from global industries to cap the climate change temperature increase to 1.5°C. STBi approved Cogeco’s submission on Jan. 28.

On top of reducing emissions from operations by 65 per cent by 2030, Cogeco says it’s holding suppliers accountable by requiring 50 per cent of its suppliers to set science-based emissions reduction targets by 2025. Within the company, Cogeco is looking to reduce emissions from the use of its products and employee commuting by 30 per cent by 2030.

“We are incredibly proud to receive this valuable third-party approval for our ambitious emission reduction targets from the Science Based Targets initiative,” stated Philippe Jetté, Cogeco’s chief executive officer. “Being the first and only telecommunications company in Canada to have this stamp of approval is not only proof of our commitment to climate action and sustainable growth, it also serves to highlight our leadership and the rigour of our approach.”

Telus is also committed to STBi, but it has yet to set a target.

With climate change rapidly worsening, sustainability has become a hot part of corporate responsibility. Telecom accounts for 1 per cent of the world’s total energy consumption.

Such is the case with Canadian operators. In its 2019 Corporate Social Responsibility Report, Rogers said that it diverted 3,550 tonnes of materials from landfills through reuse, recycling or donations to local charities. In its own report, Bell said that it prevented the release of more than 67 kilotonnes of Carbon dioxide equivalent. Similarly, Telus said that it avoided 15 kilotonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent by upgrading its HVAC coolers and ongoing optimization.

Cogeco was not immediately available for comment.

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