There is an increased focus on environmental issues globally, where Climate Change is the most emerging one. The industry is a key player to be able to solve these issues. Hence, Ericsson has set up high expectations on the products and services that we offer.
Consequently, Ericsson expect you as our supplier to set the same high standards. In general, we expect that our Suppliers work with environmental issues from a strategic perspective and in a systematic manner. We expect that our suppliers shall identify their own Environmental risks and implement actions to mitigate these. However, as a minimum, we expect that our suppliers adhere to the requirements set in the Code as well as in our Ericsson Environmental Requirements for Business Partners.
Complete information found at: Supplier requirements related to responsible sourcing.
Environmental Management System
Ericsson requires that you as supplier have a systematic approach towards environmental issues. This means that all our suppliers need to have an Environmental Management system in place, relevant for their business operations. For example, a supplier involved in manufacturing of hardware components might have higher environmental risks than a software supplier. This should then also be reflected by the management system and the level of ambitions of the supplier’s mitigation efforts, ambitions and targets.
The minimum set of components of the management system, such as the need for an Environmental Policy, identification of environmental aspects and implementation of an improvement program, is described in detail in the Code.
Further on, Environmental certification in accordance with ISO 14001 or equivalent is viewed favorably.
You as a supplier should have a responsible person (“management representative”) appointed to ensure that environmental legal requirements are fulfilled.
Products and services
The hardware products and components we procure from our suppliers, will in most cases become Ericsson branded products. We as a company need in our turn show that our products fulfill the requirements of our customers and legislations as well as to fulfill our ambitions within environmental sustainability. Important topics are what substances are included in the products we source and how much energy they are consuming and how these shall be handled at end-of-life.
You as a supplier must be able to demonstrate design and supply chain activities which enable reduction of the adverse environmental impact of your products and services.
You must comply with the requirements in the Ericsson Lists of Banned and Restricted Substances, among all covering substances that are prohibited to be used in Ericsson’s products. Further on, all our hardware component suppliers must be prepared to declare the full material content of the products delivered to Ericsson.
Equally important as our product requirements, are our requirements related to the manufacturing of our products. Ericsson does not want to cause any environmental degradation during the manufacturing of our products.
If you are a supplier producing products that you sell to Ericsson, you must be able to demonstrate environmentally sound manufacturing practices. This means that you must not use any chemicals included in the Ericsson Lists of Banned and Restricted Substances. You shall also have installed proper equipment for treating any emissions or effluents from your operations and to secure that this equipment is properly maintained and is always functioning as intended.
All transportation has big environmental impact. Therefore, you as a supplier are expected to reduce this impact by using the most environmentally friendly means of transport whenever possible.
- You are expected to use fuel-efficient and low-emission vehicles when transporting goods or providing services for Ericsson. If possible, use land- or sea-based shipping methods as much as possible instead of flying your products and components.
- You must be prepared to provide information about environmental impact aspects of transportation of goods to Ericsson, for example mode of transport, emissions of the modes of transport, packaging material, and production locations.
Climate change mitigation
Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of today. To solve this challenge, we believe that the industry needs to take a vital role. However, we also face increasing regulations and requirements related to energy reduction and climate mitigation. As an example, many of Ericsson’s customers have implemented requirements for climate neutrality in their entire value chains, meaning that all operations shall be neutral regarding greenhouse gas emissions.
Within Ericsson´s Code of Conduct for Business partners, Ericsson state that all suppliers and other business partners needs to develop and implement plans to reduce their carbon footprint according to the 1.5-degree scenario presented by the UNFCCC Paris Agreement. Meeting the 1.5-degree scenario, means that we as companies need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions according to what science deem enough to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees against pre-industrial level.
The first step of being able to become better in reducing carbon emissions is to calculate your carbon footprint that includes all greenhouse gas emissions re-calculated to Carbon Dioxide Equivalent´s  (CO2e), using the Greenhouse Gas protocol standards.
It is up to every supplier to decide on company reduction targets. It is, however, recommended that our suppliers seek guidance for setting the correct company targets to be able to meet the 1.5-degree scenario. We therefore advice to set science-based targets. This can be supported through submitting company emission reduction targets to the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) to get the support needed. When your company targets are set you can go forward in actions in order to try and fulfill your targets. For further guidance and information on how sectors and companies can reduce emissions you are most welcome to go to the exponential roadmap.
When the targets are set and official, you should, as a company develop plans and roadmaps to phase out all your carbon emissions. During the coming years, we will gradually increase our requirements related to energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
Energy consumption is always a heavy contributor to emissions for a company. In order to fulfill your 1.5-degree targets, it is important to firstly try to reduce your consumption of energy within the company. Energy efficiency is important, and your company can save a lot of money in reducing the energy consumption.
After the energy usage are minimized, it is important to choose the lowest carbon alternative for your electricity sources. For electricity, if your country has an electricity mix that depends on fossil sources such as coal, natural gas or oil, it should be a good idea to investigate buying green electricity, or green electricity certificates. For some companies, it can also pay out, investing in producing our renewable electricity at the site.
It is also recommended to look over what the company uses for heating or cooling. The lowest carbon alternative shall be used, depending on your circumstances.
Guide towards Science Bases Targets:
- Measure and calculate your carbon footprint by using the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. The emissions are then divided into: emissions from owned or controlled sources (scope 1), as well as indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy (Scope 2), and if applicable your indirect emissions (scope 3).
- Decide a base year no less than 2 years back, where you measure your emission reductions and progress against.
- Decide on an absolute target in the future to at least halve your emissions within 10 years against your baseline year. This means an annual 7 % reduction in emissions. Your target can be officially registered through the Science Based Target initiative.
- Implement mitigation measures and plans to reach your target.
Fresh and clean water is a scarce natural resource. Due to changes in precipitation caused by a changing climate, it is expected that this resource will be even more scarce. You as a supplier are expected to control and measure your water usage. If water consumption is identified as a significant environmental aspect, we expect you to develop a water management plan to reduce the overall water consumption.
Waste and circular approaches
Suppliers must minimize the waste from their operations. To achieve a reduction of waste streams, the Supplier must identify its impact as well as define and implement targets and plans for waste reduction. If available, all waste streams from the operations of a Supplier must be separated for recycling or reuse as appropriate.
The Supplier must, upon request, inform Ericsson about the waste reduction targets, plans and achievements.
The following questions give you an idea of what you may need to secure in your Management System in relation to these requirements. You should see the questions as a guideline with selected examples and not a comprehensive list of items.
- Does your company have an environmental policy?
- Does your company have an implemented procedure for identifying and grading the different ways in which you affect the environment (your “environmental aspects”) – including risks?
- Does your company have a system for identifying relevant environmental laws and regulations, and for keeping the information accurate?
- Does your company consider environmental factors in relevant business decisions, for example when purchasing vehicles, products, travels or selecting process chemicals?
- Are you considering your environmental management work to be proactive and efficient as it is today?