Sustainable Development can only succeed if we work together, says Huawei’s Tony Graziano

Paris agreement and the UN’s sustainable development goals are a testimony to the difference we can make when we join forces across geographical, sectoral and policy dividing lines argues Huawei Communications chief.

 Tony Graziano | Photo credit: Huawei

By Tony Graziano

27 Dec 2016

The Paris agreement and the UN’s sustainable development goals, both adopted in 2015, are a testimony to the difference we can make when we join forces across geographical, sectoral and policy dividing lines.

Progress towards these objectives will to a large extent depend on that same ability to work together.

The two commitments create a reference framework which can ensure that progress is sustainable in a variety of interlinked areas, ranging from education to technological progress, and from the management of natural resources to the development of infrastructure.

As a leading global ICT solutions provider, Huawei is working to be a part of this process. Delivering innovative products, solutions and next-gen connectivity to more than one-third of the world’s population in over 170 countries involves a huge responsibility to ensure that we contribute to making the world a better place to live in.

Our sustainability management system is designed to mainstream this aspect into everything we do. In 2015, Huawei reduced its CO2 emissions by 40,000 tonnes, saving 44.3 million kWh of electricity over one year.

This massive emissions cut was achieved thanks to technological and management improvements, as well as a strategic focus on ICT energy efficiency and on collaboration to build sustainability across the supply chain.

Huawei’s collaboration project with Orange, announced in the context of COP21, is an example of how we are putting this idea into practice at a European level. The two companies have agreed to build highly energy-efficient telecommunications networks by 2020.

Since the beginning of their partnership in 2013, the partners have already achieved several milestones, including the design of energy-saving customer connector cards and radio equipment for mobile networks.

Carbon reduction and other efforts to protect the environment are one key aspect of Huawei’s corporate sustainable development strategy.

Our commitment also spans employee protection, cybersecurity and a focus on contributing to local communities. At a European level, actions to bridge the digital divide and address the e-skills challenge are at the heart of these efforts.

Late last month, a group of European students who participated in Huawei’s flagship skills programme, ‘Seeds for the Future’, gathered in Brussels to present their ‘Manifesto for the digital Europe of tomorrow’ to European decision-makers.

The students described their dreams and fears linked to the deep transformations underway, and called on European Union leaders to facilitate this transition. The students’ call echoes the vision of the Paris agreement and the 2030 agenda for sustainable development.

Turning this vision into reality will require decisive action not just at a policy level, but also among the business and research communities.

By joining forces, we can live up to the dream of a harmoniously developing society.

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