Energy advocacy and emission reduction commitments place Sprint on top
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (BUSINESS WIRE), April 29, 2013 - Greenpeace International has recognized Sprint (NYSE:S, news, filings) as the leader among all global telecommunications companies on this year’s Cool IT Leaderboard. Cisco and Google tied for first among the IT sector while Sprint led in the telecommunications field. Sprint’s work on climate and energy advocacy, as well as its aggressive actions to reduce its emissions and that of its supply chain, led to a No. 5 overall ranking and its debut appearance on the list.
The ranking, Greenpeace International’s sixth Cool IT Leaderboard, evaluates 21 global IT and telecom firms on their leadership in three main areas: the companies’ offerings of IT solutions to reduce energy demand across the economy; their management of their own energy footprints; and whether they use their influence to advocate for government policies that encourage the adoption of renewable energy and energy efficiency.
“Like Greenpeace, we recognize the unique opportunity that IT and telecommunications companies have to lower global emissions through IT solutions and adoption of cleaner energy sources,” said Amy Hargroves, director of corporate responsibility at Sprint. “Our decision to adopt absolute greenhouse gas and energy reduction goals as well as lobby congressional representatives to support cleaner, greener power offers companies like Sprint a chance to use their technology and advocacy in a positive manner.”
Commitment to Renewable Energy
Sprint has secured 5 percent of its total energy through renewable energy sources and plans to increase that total to 10 percent by 2017. Sprint believes it is essential to promote alternative and renewable energy – in particular, wind and solar energy – , given its clean emissions profile, capacity for incremental technological advancement, and opportunity to create jobs and domestic manufacturing.
During the past decade, Sprint's involvement with clean energy has included installation of on-site clean-energy facilities, partnering with energy-research institutions to research clean-energy alternatives, advocating in support of clean-energy opportunities, and investing in Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs). Last year, Sprint took an unusual stand lobbying several members of Congress to extend the wind production tax credit. The effort benefitted Sprint and many other companies that have commitments to cleaner, greener power as part of their long-term energy goals. Earlier this year, Congress agreed to pass the extension of the wind PTC. The credit, which was included in a “tax extenders” package, will apply to all wind projects that begin construction in 2013.
Impact from IT Energy
Running a wireless network requires continuous optimization within data centers, across its servers, storage and network assets. Sprint has significantly improved its energy efficiency during the past five years, despite an increase in managed data centers resulting from business acquisitions and growing customer base.
From 2007 through 2009, Sprint focused on reducing the complexity of the IT environment and then shifted to specific energy-efficiency projects. Those projects consolidated and removed redundant or unused applications. They focused on air handling and lighting infrastructure; deployed new zone-control systems, variable-frequency drives and proximity lighting; and incorporated these elements into the Sprint Data Center design template to facilitate long-term energy savings. In 2011 alone, Sprint reported a 6.57 percent reduction based on these enhancements.
Managing the Supply Chain Footprint
Sprint is the first and only U.S. telecom company to publicly announce an absolute GHG emission reduction goal. Sprint’s focus to cut its emissions also stretches to its manufacturers and suppliers. Since 2009, Sprint has actively engaged its vendors to understand its emissions strategy and to advocate for better external reporting and disclosure of its greenhouse gas impact.
Sprint also commissioned a third party to conduct a cradle-to-gate assessment of Sprint's supply-chain emissions and identify supply-chain "hot spots" to focus on for emissions reduction. Sprint has a clear understanding of its total supply-chain emissions, which sectors contribute the most, and which suppliers make the most sense to work with on targeted-reduction efforts. Sprint has already begun working with its suppliers in device manufacturing, network equipment, information services, and print and paper procurement.
The only other telecommunications companies to make Greenpeace’s Cool IT Leaderboard are Vodafone at No. 10, Softbank at No. 11, Telefonica at No. 16 and AT&T at No. 18.
Sprint continues to receive recognition for its leadership in environmental practices. In each of the last two years, the carrier has been named No. 3 in the United States by Newsweek’s annual Green Rankings of the 500 greenest companies. Last month, global consulting and analyst firm Frost and Sullivan recognized Sprint as the 2012 North American Award for Green Excellence. In 2012, the carrier was named No. 4 – and the only wireless provider – on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Top 20 Technology & Telecom list of green power users within the sector. Sprint has also been recognized by independent analyst firm Verdantix for its corporate sustainability performance, and for the last two years Sprint Buyback has been named the best buyback program in the industry by Compass Intelligence, based on an overall score among national carriers.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 55 million customers at the end of the first quarter of 2013 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. The American Customer Satisfaction Index rated Sprint No. 1 among all national carriers in customer satisfaction and most improved, across all 47 industries, during the last four years. Newsweek ranked Sprint No. 3 in both its 2011 and 2012 Green Rankings, listing it as one of the nation’s greenest companies, the highest of any telecommunications company. You can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.