Australia's 'First Carbon Neutral Telecom Company': Do Telstra's Environmental Claims About Belong Stack Up? | temperature check (2023)

TBelong, elstra's low-cost mobile phone and internet company, is in the midst of a national ad campaign that is memorable for its images of a bloodless severed thumb climbing a snow-covered mountain.

“It is estimated that the average Australian scrolls the height of Everest on their phone every month. That is why we proudly offset our grid emissions,” the announcement states.

Belong often reminds customers on its website that it is Australia's "first carbon neutral telecommunications company." an advertising executivesaid his campaign for the telecommunications companyshowed "that with Belong's carbon-neutral mobile and internet, you can feel good about commuting."

How The Good Guys Got The Risks Of Gas Stoves And Bob Katter's New Vest Wrong | Temperature control Read more

That carbon neutrality, like that of its parent company Telstra, is certified through the government's Climate Active program, but depends almost entirely on buying large amounts of carbon offsets abroad.

Companies around the world are coming under scrutiny for relying on offsets to deliver on climate promises. A UN think tank has said offsets should only be used as a last resort after companies have made real direct cuts.

So how did Belong come to claim that it was carbon neutral?

(Video) Saving the place where we Belong

Accordingdisclosures made to Climate Active, over three years from 2018/19 to 2020/21, the most recent periods available, Belong's internal efforts (such as optimization of heating and cooling systems and equipment upgrades) led to a reduction of only 1,652 tons of CO2. But the annual savings actually dropped in that time from 816 t in the first year to 377 t in the third year.

During the same period, the company bought 201,933t of carbon offsets to cover the rest of its emissions. More than 80% of these offsets were created in 2014 by a wind farm in China.

In a statement, Telstra said Belong's next report to Climate Active would show a further CO2 emissions reduction of 4,790 t between fiscal 2021 and 2022.

This reduction reflected "continued progress in target emissions reduction activity" toward a goal of reducing absolute emissions by 50% by 2030. "To date, 14% of this goal has been achieved, largely as consequence of a significant investment in energy efficiency".

Belong also offers second-hand phones, allows customers to continue using their own modems, and encourages mobile phone recycling.

First Nations first?

Belongsaid in a company blogat the end of 2021 that as it "began to move towards certification", its main tenet was "three words with a lot of meaning: First Nations First".

But that has not been the case when it comes to the tradeoffs the company has chosen. Only 320 t, or 0.16%, of their compensation over the three years relates toan indigenous led projectand Queensland.

A Telstra spokesperson said: “The phrase 'First Nations First' is not something we have ever used in our marketing or advertising and we acknowledge and agree that it was wrong for it to be used in this way and given such prominence in the Blog. ”

A statement said Telstra and Belong did "an enormous amount of work with and for First Nations communities," and they consult and receive "advice from indigenous stakeholders inside and outside the company, including on our environmental programs."

(Video) The business case for emissions reductions and setting climate goals – August 2020

  • Sign up for Guardian Australia's free morning and afternoon ezines for your daily news digest

Telstra's carbon neutral claim

It belongs to the ownerTelstra also uses Active Weatherstate that it is a “carbon neutral” organization. In the six months from January to June 2021, Telstra purchased 1.01 million tons of carbon offsets.

But other than buying offsets, what did the company do to reduce emissions?

Telstra has a goal of reducing its "absolute emissions by at least 50% by 2030." The company's disclosure to Climate Active says it spent $8.6 million on "energy and emissions reduction initiatives" to achieve annual savings of 10,413 tons, just over 1% of the cuts the company claimed for buying offsets (for context, Telstra made about $3 billion). profit for that year).

skip previous newsletter promotion

after newsletter promotion

Goodbye Tucker Carlson, Climate Change Denier Whose Claims Never Accumulated | Temperature control Read more

Only about 7% of the offsets Telstra bought were Australian, with most of the rest coming from renewable energy projects in India.

Dr. Alex Lo, from the Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand, publishedresearch this monthon the use of renewable energy projects as offsets. Some 38% of Telstra's compensation was related to 2019 and 2020 Indian solar projects, which Lo says "require scrutiny."

(Video) Israel-UAE innovation Opportunities for Australian & New Zealand companies

A critical factor for a project to generate carbon credits is that it must be “additional”, that is, the project would not have been carried out without investments through the carbon market.

Lo says that solar prices in India fell by around 85% between 2010 and 2019 while, at the same time, international carbon prices were low, “meaning that credit income can hardly be seen as a key driving force of project development”.

Telstra said it "did not agree" that its carbon offsets were not additional, and the company carried out extensive due diligence. "All of Telstra's projects are additional," the statement said, adding that it viewed carbon offsets as a "temporary 'bridging' measure."

The company said it expects the proportion of offsets tied to renewables "to decline in the coming years, as we shift our efforts to develop and mature markets for nature-based solutions."

The company had a goal of "enabling renewable energy generation equivalent to 100% of our consumption by 2025" and had purchased a farm to plant 150,000 native trees and shrubs that would sequester around 160,000 tons of CO2 over the next 25 years. .

coral claims

Shadow Environment Minister Jonathon Duniamaccused the government last weekof ignoring a report on the health of the Great Barrier Reef from the marine park management authority showing that the reef had been in “good health for a number of years”.

The report said the reef had gone through relatively benign years, but warned that threats from the climate crisis were "increasing."

Speaking to Sky News Australia's Outsiders programme, Jennifer Marohasy, a fellow at the Institute of Public Affairs, said the reef was in excellent health and questioned reports of John Brewer Reef near Townsville during last year's mass coral bleaching, the first mass bleaching, officials said, in a generally cooler La Niña year.

Marohasy visited John Brewer in April "to take a look at the corals" and said that "by coincidence" scientists from the Australian Institute of Marine Science (Aims) were also there conducting an underwater study.

(Video) Forever Fest Day 9 (The Future) – Lily Dempster and One Small Step

“They reported zero bleaching,” Marohasy said, saying this was despiteaerial reconnaissancereporting 60% coral bleaching at the same site. “It's crazy,” she said. This was "misinformation," said host Rita Panahi.

It is?

Aims told Temperature Check that they did not conduct any in-water monitoring in April, when Marohasy visited, but had been in the water on March 6, nine days before aerial surveys recorded 60% bleaching on the reef. .

That in-water study found that "coral bleaching was variable in different parts of the reef," Aims said, with some parts of the reef showing no bleaching and others between 10% and 30%.

Australia's resources minister warmly praises gas as industry PR hides doubts about future | Temperature control Read more

The amount of heat stress facing the corals jumped in the nine days between the in-water survey and the aerial survey.

So was it "crazy" that aerial surveys had a different result than in-water checks involving divers being towed in two-minute bursts 81 times around the 15 km perimeter of the reef?

Aims said the same results should not have been expected, because they came from different times, used different methods, and examined different parts of the reef (in-water surveys included deeper corals, but aerial surveys only counted corals in the top 6m). of the water) .

(Video) Brisbane City Council Meeting - 9 June 2020

A statement from Aims read: “While there are differences between the results, the results of the March 6, 2022 in-water survey correlate reasonably well with the March 15 airborne surveys.

“It is important to note that the 2022 heat peak for the [reef] occurred on March 14. If one were to visit John Brewer Reef in April, about a month after the peak of heat stress, conditions could have cooled and the corals would have recovered from moderate levels of heat stress."


What is Australia's first carbon neutral telco? ›

Telstra's carbon neutral claim

Belong's owner, Telstra, also uses Climate Active to claim it is a “carbon neutral” organisation. In the six months from January to June 2021, Telstra bought 1.01m tonnes worth of carbon offsets.

What is Telstra's environmental policy? ›

Our resource efficiency goals: Reuse or recycle 500,000 mobile phones, modems and other devices each year to 2025. Ensure 100% of Telstra branded packaging is made of renewable or recycled material and is fully recyclable by 2022. Increase our network waste recycling rate to 85% by 2025.

How is Telstra carbon neutral? ›

Your home's electricity consumption is automatically carbon neutral when you're with Telstra Energy. Our carbon neutral offering applies to all customers and all plans, meaning that you don't need to check a box, or pay an extra amount to make a difference. It's that simple.

What are Telstra's goals for climate change? ›

Reduce our absolute emissions by at least 50% by 2030. Enable renewable energy generation equivalent to 100% of our consumption by 2025.

What is Australia's carbon neutral plan? ›

Australia's whole-of-economy Long-Term Emissions Reduction Plan is our plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Through the Plan, we will achieve net zero emissions by 2050 in a practical, responsible way that will take advantage of new economic opportunities while continuing to serve our traditional markets.

What is the Australian government's carbon neutral program? ›

The Australian government released its Long Term Emissions Reduction Plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. The Plan aims at reaching a net zero economy through a technology-based approach, whilst protecting relevant industries, regions and jobs.

What is the Telstra emissions commitment? ›

Telstra's commitment to climate means reducing its carbon emissions by at least 50% by 2030 and investing in carbon offset projects to counteract the emissions that remain after our reductions.

What are the three environmental laws in Australia? ›

Australian Capital Territory (ACT): Environment Protection Act 1997. New South Wales (NSW): Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997. Northern Territory (NT): Waste Management and Pollution Control Act 1998. Queensland (QLD): Environmental Protection Act 1994.

What are the 6 environmental policies? ›

Federal and state environmental rules cover air quality, water quality, waste management, land conservation, chemical and oil spills, drinking water quality. Some environmental policies regulate the actions of private individuals, organizations, or businesses.

What is the most carbon neutral company? ›

Eden Springs – The Water & Coffee Company

The company have been working to reduce their environmental impacts for almost a decade, and the company has been certified CarbonNeutral® since 2010. They have been able to reach net-zero carbon emissions through many improvements in energy efficiency.

What is a major company that is carbon neutral? ›

General Motors (GM) The 6th largest automaker globally and icon of the American auto industry kicked off 2021 by announcing its plans to become carbon neutral by 2040 in both its products and operations.

Is Belong Internet carbon neutral? ›

Australia's first carbon neutral telco

Since then, we've picked up a few green awards for our services.

What is Telstra's renewable energy target? ›

Telstra has been carbon neutral in our operations since July 2020. By 2025, we will enable renewable energy generation equivalent to 100% of our consumption. By 2030, we will achieve at least a 50% reduction in absolute emissions from a FY19 baseline.

What are the objectives of Telstra? ›

We innovate to help our customers, build better futures, and move each other and our communities forward, together.

What are Australia's climate promises? ›

Australia's climate change commitments include: The Paris Agreement. Australia submitted its revised National Determined Contribution (NDC) to the UNFCCC in June 2022. This included: • Reaffirming a target of net zero emissions by 2050. Committing to reduce Greenhouse gas emissions by 43% from 2005 levels.

What is Australia doing to reduce carbon emissions? ›

The Australian Government is working to reduce emissions by: upgrading the electricity grid to support more renewable power. reducing the price of electric vehicles. supporting businesses and industries to innovate and adopt smarter practices and technologies.

What is Australia's goal for carbon emissions? ›

In June 2022 Australia updated its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC)1, committing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 43% below 2005 levels by 2030. The revised 2030 commitment is both a single-year target to reduce emissions to 43% below 2005 levels by 2030 and a multi-year emissions budget from 2021-2030.

What is Australia's plan to green? ›

The Greens plan includes: Large-scale public investment in renewable energy and storage, to replace every coal-fired power plant in the country by 2030, ensuring we deal with the climate emergency in time.

What is the difference between net zero and carbon neutral? ›

Net zero is similar in principle to carbon neutrality, but is expanded in scale. To achieve net zero means to go beyond the removal of just carbon emissions. Net zero refers to all greenhouse gases being emitted into the atmosphere, such as methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and other hydrofluorocarbons.

What percentage of carbon emissions does Australia produce? ›

Australian emissions

Australia is the world's 14th highest emitter, contributing just over 1 per cent of global emissions.

Is Australia doing enough for climate change? ›

New global climate ranking sees Australia go from “dead last to far from a pass” Australia has climbed just four places to rank 55th out of 63 in this year's global Climate Change Performance Index 2023, launched at COP27 in Egypt, a slight improvement on last year's where it came in dead last for climate policy.

What are the three entities of Telstra? ›

  • 1.1 Overseas Telecommunications Commission.
  • 1.2 Privatisation.
  • 1.3 National Broadband Network.

Why is Telstra restructuring? ›

The legal restructure aims to increase the transparency of our infrastructure assets, improve management focus on our infrastructure and customer businesses, and create greater flexibility and optionality to realise value from the Telstra Group's fixed assets over time.

What is Telstra future ways of working? ›

To make our environment appealing and dynamic, Telstra implemented Future Ways of Working (FWOW®) – a new more flexible and collaborative work ethos and environment. It supports the diverse work activities, personalities, priorities and projects that drive our success.

What are the top 3 environmental issues Australia? ›

The report found Australia's environment is “poor and deteriorating” due to “climate change, habitat loss, invasive species, pollution and resource extraction.”

What is Australia's main piece of environmental legislation called? ›

Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

What is Australia's environmental law? ›

The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 ( EPBC Act) — Australia's national environment law — makes it an offence for any person to take an action that is likely to have a significant impact on matters protected by the Act, unless they have the approval of the Australian environment minister.

What are the 5 P's of environmental regulation? ›

Despite the complexity of environmental law and policy, there are only five basic policy instruments that governments can apply. These can be captured through a simple framework known as 'the Five P's'. These include Prescriptive Regulation, Property Rights, Penalties, Persuasion, and Payments.

What are the 4 Rs of environmental policy? ›

During the pandemic, the world saw the largest drop of carbon emissions, ever! One easy way to make sure that the eco-trend continues is to always remember the 4Rs. In this order of priority, remember to refuse, reduce, reuse and recycle.

What are the 6 R's to save the environment? ›

6Rs: Rethink, Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Repair

These are all useful terms to explore reducing the impact of technology on people and the environment.

Who is the number 1 producer of carbon emissions? ›

The largest source of greenhouse gas emissions from human activities in the United States is from burning fossil fuels for electricity, heat, and transportation.

Which country is completely carbon neutral? ›

Carbon-Neutral (Net-Zero) Countries:

Madagascar. Niue.

How many US companies are carbon neutral? ›

These 337 brands have become Climate Neutral Certified. Together they measured and offset 1,330,568 tonnes of carbon to account for the impacts of their last year's operations.

Who is the biggest seller of carbon credits? ›

South Pole Carbon Credit Program

With over 700 climate action projects around the world, South Pole has the largest offset program portfolio.

Who is the largest buyer of carbon credits? ›

If you're wondering who is the largest seller of carbon credit, it's currently China and India. While the largest buyer of carbon credit is usually the countries in Europe.

Who is the largest purchaser of carbon credits? ›

' It says that Delta, Alphabet, and Disney are among the biggest buyers of carbon credits. Those companies purchased 7.8 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent, 3.5 million, and 2.5 million, respectively, between 2017 and 2019.

What is the difference between Telstra and belong? ›

Belong is a division of Telstra providing low-cost mobile and internet services. Belong operates semi-independently in several areas, including products, marketing, service, billing and partly in IT, but is not a separate legal entity.

Does belong use Telstra? ›

Belong mobile uses part of Telstra's mobile network.

Does belong use the 5G network? ›

What speeds are available with Belong? We want to keep our network simple while providing some flexibility. That's why you can choose from two speed options: 4G and 5G download speeds for included and purchased data are capped at 100 Mbps on our in-market $45 and below mobile plans and our $35 and below data plans.

Does Telstra invest in fossil fuels? ›

Just like other energy retailers, with Telstra Energy you'll still receive a mix of fossil fuels and renewable energy to power your home. What sets us apart is our investments in renewable energy projects to feed more clean energy into the electricity grid.

What is Telstra's competitive advantage? ›

Telstra's networks are one of our biggest competitive advantages and we must continue to invest in creating networks for the future to deliver unparalleled coverage, speed, reliability and security. Our systems and processes are being digitised to enable brilliant customer experiences and to simplify the way we work.

What is Australia's largest renewable energy source? ›

Hydro energy resources were developed early in Australia and are currently the largest renewable source of electricity. Hydro energy is derived from water within areas of high rainfall and elevation (mostly in New South Wales and Tasmania).

Why is Telstra so successful? ›

Readily accepting, changing circumstances, Telstra chose to focus on staying ahead of the competition through its better customer service and constant drive to improve its products as well introduce new ones. Consequently, increased competition did more to push the company's success than taking over its market.

What are the strengths of Telstra? ›

Telstra Strengths

The strengths of Telstra looks at the key aspects of its business which gives it competitive advantage in the market. Some important factors in a brand's strengths include its financial position, experienced workforce, product uniqueness & intangible assets like brand value.

What is Telstra value proposition? ›

Telstra International recently adopted a new customer value proposition under the tagline: 'Global connections. Infinite possibilities.

What is the carbon neutral policy in Australia? ›

APS Net Zero 2030 is the Government's policy for the Australian Public Service (APS) to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2030, and transparently report on its emissions from the latter half of 2023. The policy will be updated over time, informed by APS emissions data and annual reporting.

What are 5 impacts of climate change in Australia? ›

Heatwaves are becoming more frequent and more intense. We experience longer droughts, longer and more severe fire seasons, more intense storms, less ice and snow cover, floods, rising sea levels and our oceans are becoming warmer and more acidic.

What are two facts about climate in Australia? ›

Australia is the driest of all inhabited continents, with considerable rainfall and temperature variability both across the country and from year to year. Australia has a wide range of daily temperatures, with summer temperatures ranging from of 5.7°C in New South Wales to 30.8°C in Queensland, and to 8°C in Tasmania.

What is Australia's first carbon credit ETF? ›

Australia's first global carbon credits, the VanEck Global Carbon Credits ETF (Synthetic), will be listed on the ASX on Thursday under the ticker code XCO2.

What was the first telecom company in Australia? ›

Australia's first telephone service (connecting the Melbourne and South Melbourne offices of Robinson Brothers, a Melbourne engineering firm) was launched in 1879. The private Melbourne Telephone Exchange Company opened Australia's first telephone exchange in August 1880.

Which is the worlds first carbon neutral City? ›

Adelaide. Carbon Neutral Adelaide is our community's shared ambition to work together and make the City of Adelaide one of the world's first carbon neutral cities.

Who is the first carbon neutral team in the world? ›

Vegan pies, shirts made from coffee grounds, and fan urine-based fertiliser: how Forest Green Rovers became the world's first carbon neutral club. Third tier English football club Forest Green Rovers are grabbing the footballing world's attention through their climate friendly practices.

WHO issues carbon credits in Australia? ›

The Clean Energy Regulator administers national carbon markets for: the Emissions Reduction Fund, which supplies Australian carbon credit units (ACCUs) the Renewable Energy Target, which creates tradable large-scale generation certificates (LGCs) and small-scale technology certificates (STCs).

How many Australian ETFs are there? ›

so they are a great way to get exposure to an entire component of the market through one share transaction. As at January 2023 there are 240 ASX listed ETFs from which to choose.
Fund NameBetaShares A200
ASX CodeA200
Mgmt Fee0.04%
BenchmarkS&P/ASX 200
10 more columns

Does Australia have a carbon credit system? ›

In Australia we have a government-run carbon credit scheme that gives Australian Carbon Credit Units (ACCUs) to projects for carrying out these activities. Projects earn one carbon credit for every tonne of carbon dioxide or carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) stored or avoided by a project.

What is the second biggest telco in Australia? › ranked number 1 and is the most visited Telecommunications website in Australia in April 2023, followed by as the runner up, and ranking at 3rd place as the leaders of the Telecommunications websites in Australia.

What are the major telecommunications companies in Australia? ›

The telecom industry in Australia consists of three major carriers and an infrastructure provider, National Broadband Network (NBN), which provides fiber and fixed-line networks. Those who mount their technology on the towers are Telstra, Optus, and TPG, formerly known as VHA, plus NBN.

What is the second largest Telecom company in Australia? ›

We own and operate nationwide mobile and fixed networks that are connecting Australia for the better. As the second largest telecommunications company listed on the ASX, TPG Telecom has a strong challenger spirit and a commitment to delivering the best services and products to our customers.

Which is the only country in the entire world to become not just carbon neutral but a carbon negative? ›

This country isn't just carbon neutral -- it's carbon negative. Deep in the Himalayas, on the border between China and India, lies the Kingdom of Bhutan, which has pledged to remain carbon neutral for all time.

Which country is only carbon negative? ›

Bhutan is the world's first carbon negative country. Mainly because of its extensive forests, covering 70% of the land, the Kingdom is able to absorb more carbon dioxide than it produces. How did Bhutan get here and how can the country be an example for the rest of the world?


1. Brisbane City Council Meeting - 25 August 2020
(Brisbane City Council Meetings)
2. Brisbane City Council Meeting - 24 November 2020
(Brisbane City Council Meetings)
3. Australian 90's TV Advertisements/Commercials (Circa 1994) - Part 12
4. PUG 2021 - Downstream: New Opportunities Abound
(Esri Events)
5. YOW! 2019 - Troy Hunt - Rise of the Breaches
(Skills Matter)
6. Tech Talk: Democracy and All That Stuff...
(Centre for Responsible Technology)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Rueben Jacobs

Last Updated: 07/02/2023

Views: 5938

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (77 voted)

Reviews: 84% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Rueben Jacobs

Birthday: 1999-03-14

Address: 951 Caterina Walk, Schambergerside, CA 67667-0896

Phone: +6881806848632

Job: Internal Education Planner

Hobby: Candle making, Cabaret, Poi, Gambling, Rock climbing, Wood carving, Computer programming

Introduction: My name is Rueben Jacobs, I am a cooperative, beautiful, kind, comfortable, glamorous, open, magnificent person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.