Environmental sustainability and digitalization – Ericsson

environmental sustainability


When factories cut the cables and switch to cellular, they become much more flexible and produce less waste, while increasing productivity. Ericsson’s 5G Smart Factory in Lewisville, Texas, is a great example of what is possible. By digitalizing many of its fundamentals, the Lewisville factory has reduced energy use by 24%, relative to comparable buildings, while also increasing productivity.

environmental sustainability

Renewable energy

According to the UN, 85% of power in 2050 will need to come from renewable sources. This will mean a huge transformation for energy operators and distributors who will need greater visibility and control of their distribution networks. With 5G, these operators can connect smart meters to the grid and proactively detect faults and demand spikes that might arise, for example, from the mass charging of electric vehicles.

environmental sustainability


The transport sector is another area where digitalization can have a big impact, with the sector representing 21% of total global emissions (source: 2018 Exponential Climate Roadmap). 5G and data analytics are going to be an integral part of this equation – especially when it comes to operating autonomous vehicles on a massive scale. 5G, for example, will enable operators to control large fleets of autonomous vehicles remotely and optimize route planning and traffic, all with reduced operational costs and environmental footprint.

Sustainability is central to our purpose

At Ericsson, we have the expertise and the commitment to make a positive impact. Sustainability is central to our purpose as a company and is embedded across our value chain. Our approach is holistic, covering responsible business, environmental sustainability and digital inclusion.

Our approach to environmental sustainability

Addressing climate change is a core component of our sustainability strategy. We leverage a circular economy approach in everything we do; and work to reduce environmental impacts and emissions from our operations, our portfolio and through the solutions we deliver across society more broadly.

We are leading by example and even though our own operations are just a small part of value-chain emissions, we are equally focussed on optimizing how we operate. That’s why, in 2019, Ericsson set a Carbon Neutral target for our own operations by 2030. 

digitalization and climate change

Climate action advocates

For over two decades we’ve been advocates for climate action. We carry out peer-reviewed research, both alone and in collaboration with research partners from academia and business, on the environmental, social and economic effects of the ICT sector. We were also one of the first companies to implement life-cycle assessment methodology as an environmental strategy tool, leveraging data from our own operations, as well as our customers’ networks and the wider ICT ecosystem. We assess annually our carbon footprint and have set targets for its reduction that are approved by the Science Based Targets Initiative.

digitalization and climate change

Breaking the energy curve

‘Breaking the energy curve’ is our unique, network-level approach to reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions in mobile networks. Through our detailed research and life-cycle assessments, we have developed an innovative network-wide approach to breaking the curve that can support cost savings, efficiency gains and enable an exponential growth of data traffic without increasing energy consumption.

technology for a sustainable future

Science Based Targets Initiative

We were one of the first companies in our industry to set Science Based Targets and actively contributed to the development of a 1.5°C aligned trajectory for the ICT sector, which helps ICT companies set targets and enable fast decarbonization of the sector. 

technology for a sustainable future

1.5°C Business Playbook

We helped create the first 1.5°C Business Playbook for exponential climate action. The Playbook provides a framework on how companies and organizations of all sizes can fully integrate climate action into their business strategies and reach net-zero emissions.


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