MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., March 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Based on its recent analysis of the mobile and wireless market, Frost & Sullivan recognizes Sprint with the 2012 North American Frost & Sullivan Award for Green Excellence. Sprint, currently the third-largest mobile operator in the United States, has implemented more green initiatives than any competing mobile operator in the country. Sprint manages and monitors environmental performance through quarterly assessments and public reporting against longer term goals to ensure transparency. Energy conservation is intrinsic to its sustainability efforts, and the company engages all levels of the organization in its attempts to shrink its carbon footprint.
"It's an honor to be named the North American Mobile and Wireless leader for Green Excellence by Frost and Sullivan," said Ralph Reid, vice president of corporate responsibility at Sprint. "More importantly, being recognized as an environmental steward allows us to capitalize on previous success and enable further innovation that will help us meet our long-term sustainability goals."
Sprint has set ambitious 10-year environmental goals such as reducing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by an absolute 20 percent (the only U.S. carrier to set such a goal), lowering power consumption by 15 percent and reducing paper use by 40 percent by 2017. Sprint utilizes the Greenhouse Gas Protocol to calculate its GHG emissions and reports those numbers publicly through the Carbon Disclosure Project, a national/standardized method for measuring its success that has also acknowledged Sprint for their reporting transparency.
In 2011, Sprint announced its partnership with UL Environment to produce the first environmental standard for mobile devices across the entire wireless industry: the ULE 110. The standard provides guidelines for sensitive materials usage, energy management, manufacturing and operations, impact on health and environment, product performance, packaging, product stewardship, and sustainable innovation.
"Sprint's environmental scorecard requires all phones go through the UL Environment certification process—an industry first," said Frost & Sullivan Mobile & Wireless Research Director Brent Iadarola. "As users are becoming more environmentally conscious, this certification process provides an excellent differentiator for device manufactures, creating significant incentive for vendors to continue to strive to meet Sprint's scorecard standards."
Sustainable packaging is an area of intense focus for Sprint. The company has created a cross-functional sustainable packaging committee to address this aspect of its business and work with partners to implement it. It can potentially help reduce 60 percent of package volume, 70 percent of literature weight, 50 percent of material weight and 30 percent post-consumer fiber content. The packaging is made of unbleached kraft substrate, low volatile organic compound emissions ink, water coatings, low-impact adhesives, and 100 percent recyclable packaging. This diminishes the weight of the package, which lowers shipping costs and shipping vehicle emissions.
Sprint is also committed to developing more sustainable wireless solutions that extend to one of the market's fastest-growing opportunities: M2M (machine to machine).
"Through wireless connectivity, Sprint enables companies to optimize, schedule, monitor and track deliveries, personnel and vehicles," observed Iadarola. "Using solutions such as Connected Transportation, drivers waste less fuel in trying to locate delivery destinations and gas stations, while their employers benefit from cost-savings and organizational efficiencies."
Sprint currently offers a high-incentive device recycling/buyback program, which is lowering the number of feature phones and smartphones that are discarded every year. By 2017, for every 10 devices it sells, Sprint plans to collect nine for reuse and recycling. Today Sprint is able to collect four of every 10 devices it sells and is able to reuse 90 percent of those collected. In addition to buying back devices, Sprint will give users the option to recycle through its Project Connect program, wherein the net proceeds from the sale of collections will be used to fund and promote Internet safety resources for children.
Sprint is also striving to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels and increase use of renewable-energy sources. Renewable energy accounts for 5 percent of its energy mix, and the company aims to increase that to 10 percent by 2017. It purchased 20,000 MWH of Green-e certified Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) in August 2011. In January 2012, it purchased another 156,000 MWH of Green-e RECS in wind power, solar power and mixed renewables.
"The Sprint campus is a green showcase featuring many environmentally-themed initiatives," noted Iadarola. "Some of them include recycling more than 26,000 kilogallons of rainwater, restoring wetlands, planting over 6,000 trees, using 60 percent of the land for green space, utilizing building materials that are 81 percent regional, and starting a composting program for biodegradable landscape, food and employee waste."
Furthermore, hybrids, alternative fuel and carpool vehicles are given parking priority, and the signage is solar powered. All these efforts have made Sprint's technology headquarters one of the most eco-friendly in the country.
Each year, Frost & Sullivan presents this award to the company that has demonstrated superior technological advancement, which is aligned with a sustainable and environmentally conscious objective within its industry sector. This Award signifies the company's identification of a unique and revolutionary solution with significant environmental benefits, while presenting tremendous market potential simultaneously. Moreover, the Award also signifies that the company's overall business strategy is sound and poised for success.
Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognize companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis and extensive secondary research to identify best practices in the industry.
About Sprint Nextel
Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 55 million customers at the end of 2012 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. The American Customer Satisfaction Index rated Sprint No. 1 among all national carriers in customer satisfaction and most improved, across all 47 industries, during the last four years. Newsweek ranked Sprint No. 3 in both its 2011 and 2012 Green Rankings, listing it as one of the nation's greenest companies, the highest of any telecommunications company. You can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.
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