Verizon's Sustainability Initiatives Help Protect California's Environment

With the observation of World Environment Day on Sunday (June 5), Verizon is reaffirming its commitment to finding ways to reduce the environment impact of its operations - in California and throughout the rest of the country - by conserving energy, recycling and developing greener products.

Last year, in California alone, Verizon removed and recycled more than 5 million feet of unused cable, including 2 million feet of old lead cable, enough to stretch from San Diego to Crescent City and beyond. The company also recycled 2,895 mobile phones and accessories in California, via Verizon Wireless' HopeLine® program, which resulted in keeping electronic waste and batteries out of landfills.

Also last year, Verizon contracted with the Steelweld Equipment Co. of Helmet, Calif., to convert 300 gasoline-powered Ford E-250 cargo vans to CNG (compressed natural gas), a move that will reduce vehicle carbon emissions by 480 tons per year. Used by the company in Southern California, the CNG engines emit 23 percent less carbon dioxide than comparable gasoline-powered vans.

"We're an essential part of the technology ecosystem, and as demand for our high-IQ networks continues to increase we will grow our business responsibly," said Tim McCallion, Verizon West region president. "Verizon continues to find ways to partner with our employees, customers and vendors to find opportunities to reduce the environmental impact of our business."

In 2010, Verizon reduced its CO2 emissions by 876 million pounds as a result of aggressive recycling and energy reduction efforts. That is equivalent to the amount of energy used by 33,779 homes for a year. The company also improved its rate of emissions per terabyte of data by more than 15 percent in 2010.

Earlier this year, Verizon developed a new metric for measuring carbon efficiency, called the carbon intensity metric, which is derived by first combining the company's total carbon emissions (in metric tons) from the electricity, building fuels and vehicle fuels used to run the company's business. Then, that total is divided by the number of terabytes of data that the company transports across its network. (One terabyte equals about 300 feature-length movies.) 

Verizon's other sustainability initiatives include:

  • A Trade-In Program that rewards California consumers with a Verizon Wireless gift card when they trade in their used cell phones and tablets in a convenient and responsible way.
  • Verizon billboards are being collected and converted into tote bags and other products under an "upcycling" project. 
  • Twenty Verizon Plus and 17 Verizon Wireless stores were built to meet LEED green building certification in California.
  • Deployment of 1,642 hybrid-engine and alternative fuel vehicles throughout the company's territory in 2010, bringing the total to more than 1,900, or about 5 percent of the company's fleet. The company expects to have 7.5 percent of its fleet run on alternative fuels by year-end and 15 percent by 2015. (http://businessforums.verizon.net/t5/Responsibility-Blog/April-Showers-Bring-a-Greener-Fleet-and-the-President/ba-p/298241)
  • A plan to add several new all-electric Chevrolet Volts to the company's fleet this year. The Volts can travel up to 350 miles on a single charge.
  • The trialing of smart-building technology in 16 office locations last year, which will save the company a projected $2.1 million a year in energy costs. The program is being expanded to more than 200 locations this year.

For more information, see http://newscenter2.verizon.com/kit/green-press-kit/ or http://responsibility.verizon.com/.    

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, NASDAQ:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with more than 104 million total connections nationwide.  Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers seamless business solutions to customers around the world.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of more than 196,000 and last year generated consolidated revenues of $106.6 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.