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DoCoMo targets 2040 for carbon neutral supply chain

Japanese incumbent NTT DoCoMo has unveiled bold plans to tackle its scope 3 emissions.

Nick Wood

November 6, 2023

3 Min Read
Green technology tech environmentally friendly nature environmental protection on internet computer
F8EW66 Green technology tech environmentally friendly nature environmental protection on internet computer

Japanese incumbent NTT DoCoMo has unveiled bold plans to tackle its scope 3 emissions.

That’s a fancy way of saying the carbon pumped out by its supply chain, which according to DoCoMo accounts for around 80% of its total greenhouse gas emissions.

When it comes to sustainability, scope 3 is by far the toughest nut to crack. Scopes 1 and 2 – which cover direct emissions and emissions caused by energy usage respectively – can be addressed in-house, but scope 3 can sometimes involve some difficult conversations with suppliers.

In 2021, DoCoMo set a target of achieving net zero scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2030. This initiative involves sourcing renewable energy, both directly and through off-site power purchase agreements (PPAs), in an effort to power all DoCoMo-owned offices with green electricity by the end of next March. It is also rolling out power-saving devices across its networks to reduce energy consumption.

This week, DoCoMo announced a plan to ensure its supply chain is similarly environmentally friendly by 2040.

“Specific measures under Net-Zero by 2040 include the goal of converting all DoCoMo Shops to green power by fiscal 2030 and prioritising environmentally friendly products when procuring telecommunications equipment and other items,” said a statement from DoCoMo.

DoCoMo is already spearheading an initiative called the ‘Caboneu’ ecosystem that helps customers visualise their carbon emissions. Now it is turning its attention upstream with CO2MOS, a CO2 emissions visualisation tool for suppliers.

DoCoMo will also offer green consultancy services, and also Nexcenter – a service that supports the adoption of liquid-cooled equipment in ultra-energy-saving data centres.

Its efforts are being encouraged by the Japanese government, which in 2021 set a target of lowering the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions by 46 percent by 2030.

DoCoMo’s rivals have similar plans, but they are noticeably less aggressive.

KDDI in April 2022 said it was aiming for net zero from its business activities by 2030, and across the whole group by 2050. Similarly Softbank wants to address scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2030, but has targeted 2050 for scope 3.

It underscores the scale of the challenge when it comes to addressing scope 3, as do recent efforts by telcos to accurately measure the carbon emissions from their supply chains.

Indeed, in addition to DoCoMo, UK incumbent BT in September partnered with software giant SAP to pilot its Sustainability Data Exchange (SDX), which is designed to help companies collect, trace and share scope 3 data.

Organisations across the board appear to be following suit, with IDC predicting that by 2024, 75% of large organisations are expected to be using some sort of purpose-built ESG data management and reporting software.

Coming up with hard data to support emissions goals should go some way to patching up the reputation of corporate ESG, which has been damaged this year by damning reports about the value – or otherwise – of carbon offsets.

 

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About the Author(s)

Nick Wood

Nick is a freelancer who has covered the global telecoms industry for more than 15 years. Areas of expertise include operator strategies; M&As; and emerging technologies, among others. As a freelancer, Nick has contributed news and features for many well-known industry publications. Before that, he wrote daily news and regular features as deputy editor of Total Telecom. He has a first-class honours degree in journalism from the University of Westminster.

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