BT switches to 100% renewable electricity

Telecoms giant BT is to become one of the largest commercial companies in the UK to source 100% of its electricity from renewables.

The BT Centre on Newgate Street, London is amongst the company's buildings which will be powered by renewable electricity.

The company has signed a deal with energy supplier npower to begin sourcing electricity from renewable sources including solar, wind and tidal.

The move is part of its Better Future strategy, which aims to reduce the company’s overall carbon footprint. It calculates the switch will equate to a CO2 saving of around one million tonnes a year.

During the 2011/12 financial year, BT consumed 2.3 Gigawatt hours of energy running its UK networks, data centres and offices. This is equivalent to 0.76% of all the electricity used in the UK.

The Rt Hon Edward Davey MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, said: “I am delighted that BT is taking this approach to sourcing their electricity. I hope many other corporates will follow the lead of BT and others, in taking their electricity from renewable and low carbon sources.”

BT has also set a Net Good goal, which will see the company reducing its overall carbon footprint through energy reduction in its own operations, helping to lower its supplier’s carbon footprint and decreasing the consumption of devices provided to customers. BT will develop its portfolio of services such as conferencing to help customers reduce their emissions from travel, as well as heating, carbon emissions and other forms of energy consumption. It aims to reduce carbon emissions by at least three times the full carbon impact of its business by 2020.

BT believes that providing visibility of the carbon content in their electricity will stimulate demand and encourage energy companies to invest in renewable energy infrastructure, driving down overall carbon emissions in the UK.

Richard Tarboton, BT’s director of energy and carbon said: “Purchasing 100% renewable electricity with npower sets a strong foundation for our new ‘Net Good’ ambition. BT strives to help society live within the constraints of our planet’s resources through our products and services.This is an example of BT’s commitment to be a responsible and sustainable business leader.”