According to reports, the telecom industry is set to broaden the mandate of PricewaterhouseCoopers and ask it to recommend ways to help operators reduce carbon emissions, and not just examine the feasibility and need for viability gap funding of powering 3.5 lakh mobile towers with alternative energy.
The industry is likely to urge PwC’s Indian arm to suggest steps to help operators meet the telecom department’s “gogreen” targets set in January 2012. “PwC India’s terms of reference is likely to be broadened by seeking its suggestions on reducing carbon emissions,” said a senior executive representing Tower & Infrastructure Providers Association (Taipa), the industry body for telecom tower companies.
“Apart from examining initiatives undertaken by telcos, PwC India may be asked to examine the viability of alternate technologies like batteries as a cost-effective tool for reducing carbon emissions,” the official added. At present, DoT and the ministry for new & renewable energy do not regard batteries as a green energy source as they are storage devices.
PwC India may also be asked to also assess whether India’s green telecom policy is aligned with global standards on containing carbon emissions as specified by Geneva-based International Telecom Union (ITU).
India’s go-green laws require mobile phone companies to migrate 50% of all cell towers in rural areas and 20% in urban areas to hybrid power by 2015. Hybrid power has been defined as a mix of grid supplies and renewable energy based on solar, wind, biomass or fuel cells.