Our environment

We care about the environment and actively manage our impact on it

Minimising our impact

As part of BT we aim to make a better world by reducing the impact of our business operations. We’ve set ourselves a new 2030 target for creating less waste, cutting carbon emissions and increasing fuel efficiency.

Our Safety and Sustainability policy

We place a high value on your safety and wellbeing, protecting the environment and helping our customers lead more sustainable lives.

What we do

Carbon reduction

As part of the transition to a low carbon business model, we had previously set a target in 2008 of an 80% reduction of our carbon emissions by 2020. After reaching this target four years ahead of schedule, we’ve set a new 2030 target, approved by the Science-Based Targets Initiative to limit global warming to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursue efforts to limit it even further to 1.5°C by the end of the century.

To meet this ambitious goal, we will be targeting innovative ways to further reduce our dependency on fossil fuels, for example through the adoption of low carbon vehicles in our fleet and reducing the carbon intensity of buildings.

Phone recycling

We help our customers dispose of old phones, laptops, other electronic accessories and household batteries. Customers simply bring these items to our stores and we either send them to be recycled or dispose of them safely ourselves. We also pay customers for old devices through our phone recycling scheme.

The scheme has been a great success having recycled 447,394 phones since 2011.

We're happy to play our part in the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive, and the Batteries Directive, both of which are UK law. All electrical items and batteries we sell must now be marked with the wheelie bin symbol. This reminds customers to dispose of them separately from their usual household waste. The battery producer registration numbers for EE and BT are:

  • EE – BPRN02671 
  • BT – BPRN00390

Waste recycling

Since 2015 all the EE contact centres and offices have not sent any waste to landfill. This means our focus is now to reduce the amount of material we waste, irrespective of the fact it might be recycled or similar.

We've set all our printers to two-sided printing - a simple but very effective change - and actively manage our paper distribution. We encourage our suppliers to take back their packaging and re-use it where possible.

We also encourage our employees to recycle and have converted our on-site facilities to a single-stream process, which enables staff to recycle the majority of their waste in one place

We continue to look to minimise the size of handset packaging. We've been successful in reducing the packaging of our latest mobile broadband devices, with a 27% reduction on our 4GEE WiFi Standard when compared to the previous version.

In addition, we comply with the Single Use Carrier Bag Charge (Regulations) 2010 for our Welsh stores. Between April 2017 and March 2018, we sold 1,291 carrier bags in these stores, raising £64.55. Staff voted for this money to go to the environmental charity WWF Cymru.

How we are getting better

We're:

  • finding new ways to cut the amount of energy we’re using in our networks and equipment
  • controlling how much energy we’re using in our offices
  • using more renewable energy
  • looking at how much fuel we use in our vehicles
  • encouraging our drivers to adopt more efficient driving techniques
  • cutting down on business travel

Taking sustainability seriously

We’ll help you deal with all kinds of electrical equipment, on a like for like basis. If you bring your old phone, we might even pay you for it.

Remember you shouldn’t throw away electrical and electronic products (WEEE) with your normal rubbish. If you see this logo, you need to find a local operator that can safely recycle it.

If you don’t want to send your electrical items to us when you purchase your replacement, there are other options. Lots of electronic shops have their own take back schemes where you can recycle very small electrical and electronic goods. Or if you’re recycling kit from home, you can use your local recycling centre – go to https://www.recyclenow.com to find your nearest one. If you’re a business user, you may also want to check your contract and also check with your local authority on available recycling options.

If you’ve bought new equipment from us, and your old equipment has the crossed-out wheelie bin symbol on it, send it to us and we’ll get rid of it in an environmentally friendly way. Here’s the address:

XPO Returns Dept - WEEE Disposals, Gate 3, Harding Road, Brinklow, Milton Keynes, MK10 0DG

It’s our duty to do this under UK law. The UK government has an obligation to minimise the disposal of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) as unsorted municipal waste so that more of it can be recovered for environmentally sound disposal, as part of the WEEE and Batteries Directive.

We're not responsible for the costs of returning items.

Safe products

We control the use of any dangerous substances in every product we sell, to protect your health and our planet. Each product has to meet the following rules: 

REACH legislation means that if we sell any products that contain substances that could be dangerous, we need to tell you. These are called ‘substances of very high concern’ (SVHCs). All SVHCs used in EE or BT products are not dangerous if the products are being used in the normal way.