Airtel Networks Zambia Plc has partnered with Ericsson on a ‘Product Take-Back’ program to minimize the potential environmental impact associated with the disposal of decommissioned electrical equipment.
The Product Take-Back program is part of Ericsson’s Sustainability efforts geared towards taking accountability for environmental impacts of all products and services during their lifecycle. The program ensures that end-of-life material is treated and recycled in an environmentally responsible manner.
Airtel continues to be committed to ensuring that the beauty of Zambia is sustainably conserved and understands that environmental impact starts with its own operations.
Airtel’s CEO and Managing Director, Apoorva Mehrotra says: “Airtel is committed to being socially responsible. We believe that the adoption of responsible e-waste disposal techniques will help to manage the impact on the environment. We are collaborating with Ericsson in e-waste management to not only evacuate the waste but also educate the general public and all key stakeholders about the importance of the proper disposal of e-waste in the country.”
Ericsson provides free product retrieval and safe disposal services for equipment that has reached its shelf life, as part the company’s extended producer responsibility. Ericsson offers the program to all customers globally, which guarantees that e-waste does not end up in trade-restricted areas or landfills.
Todd Ashton, Vice President and Head of Ericsson East and South Africa says: “Ericsson aims to minimize the negative environmental impact of our own activities and products in operation, while delivering solutions to enable the low-carbon economy. Our partnership with Airtel in Zambia extends the scope of our Product Take-Back program to include creating awareness about e-waste and helping to ensure that end-of-life material is waste-treated in an environmentally responsible manner.”
E-waste, not recycled properly, is an under acknowledged environmental hazard around the world. Airtel Zambia’s initiative is geared towards creating awareness and minimizing the potential environmental impact associated with the disposal of decommissioned electrical and electronic equipment in the country.
COP26: UK Envoy Hosts High-Level Dialogue on Nature-Based Solutions in Nigeria
Over 100 participants from Nigeria including from Federal and State Governments, Civil Society Groups, Non-Governmental Organisations and International development partners, took part in a virtual ‘Nigeria for Nature’ dialogue hosted by the British High Commission in Nigeria, in collaboration with Wilton Park.
The 2-day event themed ‘Re-imagining nature-based solutions in Nigeria’ was hosted as part of efforts to sensitise the general public on the benefits of a healthy ecosystems, which underpins global food and nutrition security, and can directly improve livelihoods for millions in Nigeria, including citizens that are highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.
Discussions centred on the relevance of nature-based solutions for building resilience to climate change from different perspectives. The major challenges around the implementation, governance and financing of nature-based solutions and how to overcome them. It also examined how various stakeholders can work together for successful, sustainable nature-based solutions in Nigeria.
Key takeaways from the dialogue include: the need for better monitoring of protected areas; critical role of traditional leaders and women’s groups in ecosystem restoration; expansion of clean cooking to reduce deforestation; scaling-up education and sensitisation on the environment; private-sector engagement for sustainable management of nature; explicitly linking Nigeria’s Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) and nature; and the centrality of sustainable livelihoods to nature-based solutions.
Nigeria has been very forward leaning on nature based solutions to climate change joining the Global Ocean Alliance and the Commonwealth Clean Ocean Alliance in 2019 and signing the Leaders Pledge for Nature in 2020. President Buhari made a statement of high ambition at the Biodiversity Summit in September 2020 setting out a range of measures he wished to introduce e.g. establishment of two Marine Protected Areas (MPAs).
However, more innovation and cooperation are required in transitioning to sustainable agriculture and land-use, improving ocean resilience and coastal sustainability, and scaling-up other existing initiatives and mechanisms, including those recognised under the Paris Agreement. The ambition of this conference was to explore how to take these actions to the next level.
The introductory session on the first day included remarks from Catriona Laing CB, British High Commissioner to Nigeria; a video welcome from Lord Zac Goldsmith, the Minister of State for Pacific and the Environment, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, London; and an opening presentation on ‘Natural climate solutions as a critical contribution to climate mitigation in Nigeria’ by Dr Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar, the Honourable Minister of Environment. Sir Nicholas Kay, UK COP26 Regional Ambassador for Sub-Saharan Africa gave the closing remarks for the dialogue on both days.
The Dasgupta Review of the Economics of Biodiversity, which was launched on 2 February was highlighted by several speakers. The Review calls for urgent changes in how all societal actors “think, act and measure economic success” to protect and restore natural capital, and use that capital sustainably. Estimating the total cost globally of subsidies that damage nature to be at least 4 to 6 trillion dollars per year, the Review highlights that subsidies and other nature-negative investments currently far outweigh the financial flows that support nature.
IBM Research to Radically Accelerate Materials Discovery in 5 Key Areas
IBM unveiled its annual “5 in 5” predictions about five significant changes driven by innovation in science and technology that will take place in the next five years.
This year’s 5 in 5 focuses on five core areas of research that the company will tackle to enable a more sustainable future, coinciding with the first ever virtual UN General Assembly.
From a global pandemic to global warming, 2020 has illuminated the essential role of science — as well as clear actions based on that science — to combat some of the greatest challenges of our time.
The need to rethink how the world creates, consumes and disposes of materials has never been clearer, from storing energy more efficiently, to removing CO2 from the atmosphere to growing food more sustainably.
As part of the company’s renewed focus on the urgency of science, IBM is committed to dedicating its technology, talent, and resources towards advancing research and the discovery of new materials. It will do this by advancing technologies including AI, quantum, high performance computing and hybrid cloud to turbocharge science and address the discovery process in a fundamentally new way, including these five core areas in the next five years:
Capturing and transforming CO2 to mitigate climate change
In the next five years, we will be able to capture CO2 from the air and transform it from the scourge of the environment into something useful. The goal is to make CO2 capture and reuse efficient enough to scale globally so we can significantly reduce the level of the harmful CO2 in the atmosphere and, ultimately, slow climate change.
Modeling Mother Nature to feed a growing citizenry while reducing carbon emissions
In the next five years, we will replicate nature’s ability to convert nitrogen in the soil into nitrate-rich fertilizer, feeding the growing world while reducing the environmental impact of fertilizers. We’ll come up with an innovative solution to enable nitrogen fixation at a sustainable scale and help feed the world’s rapidly growing population.
Rethinking batteries before we have to rethink our world
In the next five years, we will discover new materials for safer and more environmentally-preferable batteries capable of supporting a renewable-based energy grid and more sustainable transportation. Many renewable energy sources are intermittent and require storage. The use of AI and quantum computing will result in batteries built with safer and more efficient materials for improved performance.
Sustainable materials, sustainable products, sustainable planet
In the next five years, we will advance materials manufacturing, enabling semiconductor manufacturers to improve the sustainability of their coveted products. Scientists will embrace a new approach to materials design that enables the tech industry to more quickly produce sustainable materials for the production of semiconductors and electronic devices.
Learning from our past for a healthier future
In the next five years, we aim to help facilitate the generation of treatments to aid physicians and front-line workers in combating novel, life-threatening viruses on a larger scale than is currently possible. A combination of AI, analytics and data can potentially help with the rapid analysis of real-world medical evidence to suggest new candidates for drug repurposing and speed clinical trials. In the future, these tools may reach widespread adoption across industries, effectively becoming one of the means of rapidly responding to global, life-threatening viruses.
Orange Debuts €500 Million Sustainability Bond
Orange issued its first sustainability bond for €500 million, seeking to finance projects aimed at driving digital and social inclusion, and combatting climate change.
In a statement, the group said the move would allow it to expand its investor base and optimise its funding structure, as the issue “was met with great success” from socially responsible investing (SRI) entities.
The larger pile of the raised funds (60 per cent) will be allocated to projects for energy efficiency and a circular economy. The rest will be put into plans for digital and social inclusion.
Orange delegate CEO Ramon Fernandez noted the company felt it was “necessary to drive our business with the objective to contribute to a more sustainable and fair world”, as the Covid-19 (coronavirus) crisis emphasised “the essential nature of telecommunications”.
The operator group stated the bond issuance was in line with its Engage 2025 strategy which Orange CEO Stephane Richard previously claimed needed social and environmental policies following the outbreak.
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