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Talks between Greenpeace, Bharti Airtel remain inconclusive over disclosing its carbon emissions

According to reports, talks between global environment NGO Greenpeace and telecom giant Bharti Airtel over disclosing its carbon emissions and phasing out diesel from telecom tower operations remained inconclusive today.

Greenpeace has been protesting against the country”s largest telecom operator for not disclosing the measures it has taken to lower its carbon emissions, including the shift towards renewable sources of energy to power its networks.

“It is unfortunate that Airtel failed to agree to our demands and thus there was no headway in the meeting. We are urging the company to reconsider its stand on the issue and come out clean in the public,” Greenpeace India Campaign Director Divya Raghunandan said in a statement.

Greenpeace alleged that Bharti has refused to commit to a timeline for disclosures.

When contacted, Cellular Operator Association of India (COAI) Director General Rajan S Mathews said, “We are working with international body GSMA to bring out a protocol on how to measure carbon emissions and steps that can be taken to reduce it at the industry level.”

COAI has conveyed to Greenpeace that IT and telecom together contribute about two per cent of the total carbon emissions in the country, he added.

The NGO has called for Airtel to catalyse a low-carbon economic growth, by using its brand power to advocate strong policies that promote renewable energy.

Last month, Greenpeace estimated that the diesel consumed by telecom companies for providing power to telecom towers was causing the exchequer an annual loss of about Rs 2,600 crore because of the subsidy on the fuel.

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