Rapid smart meter expansion at Telefónica | O2:Digitalization reduces power consumption and CO2 emissions in the network
Telefónica Deutschland / O2 is currently equipping 350 mobile phone sites per week with smart meters for digital power metering to further increase the CO2 efficiency of the O2 network. In total, a good 7,500 locations currently have smart meters. The equipment of 27,000 sites is planned by the end of 2021. Telefónica Deutschland expects considerable electricity and CO2 savings through this digitalization measure. The power consumption of every mobile phone system equipped with a smart meter is recorded every second and transmitted to a cloud server via the O2 network using an Internet of Things radio unit. The power consumption is then analyzed across all sites using Artificial Intelligence (AI), which enables predictive maintenance at a site before major damage to a mobile phone element occurs. An unusually high consumption of electricity is immediately detected and promptly remedied. This was the case, for example, with a mobile phone tower in Hamburg, whose smart meter displayed twice as much consumption as usual. The air conditioning and ventilation systems on the site were not properly coordinated. Without the smart meter, this would only have been noticed during annual maintenance. In the future, there will also be no need for a technician to travel to the mobile phone site to read the electricity meter, which is a burden on the environment.
Network technology: Focus on the road to climate neutrality
"Companies use our O2 network as a trampoline for their own sustainable digitalization. We are the green springboard for the German economy. Increasing digitalization in industry alone can save up to 20 percent of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide", explains Markus Haas, CEO of Telefónica Germany / O2. "The hunger for data that comes with increasing digitization requires additional electricity and causes CO2. This is why we have been taking sensible measures for years to make our network even more sustainable. In the coming years we want to become climate-neutral". The electricity consumption of Telefónica Germany / O2 in 2019 was 696 GWh. Network technology is responsible for 96 percent of this consumption. One of the company's most important goals is therefore to provide a network that is as environmentally friendly as possible.
Telefónica / O2 was already able to significantly exceed the CO2 and energy consumption targets for the end of 2020 by the end of 2019. By the end of 2019, Telefónica had reduced energy consumption per data volume by 56.1 percent compared to 2015. Telefónica has been purchasing 100 percent of its electricity from renewable energies since 2016. With smart metering, the company is taking a further step towards achieving its goal of climate neutrality. More information on sustainability management and climate protection can be found in the current CR Report for the 2019 fiscal year.