Globe has unveiled the first-ever Eco-SIM cards in Asia for its postpaid mobile customers, contributing to environmental sustainability by recycling refrigerator waste, in time for Zero Waste Month in January.
SIM cards are among the smallest consumer items in the world, weighing around 4 grams each.
However, with approximately 4.5 billion SIM cards manufactured every year, their combined weight represents an estimated 20,000 tons of plastic and other polymers, or the equivalent weight of 4000 jeepneys.
Together with its partner, Thales, Globe has deployed Eco-SIM cards starting November 2021, made from 100% recycled materials including polystyrene waste from refrigerators, diverting this waste stream from landfills.
Thales is a global leader in advanced technologies, investing in digital and “deep tech” innovations. Thales has been in the Philippines since 2010, and is a strategic partner to key customers in the civil aviation, defense, digital security, air traffic management, and ground transportation sectors.
Thales’ Eco-SIM Card was first developed in 2020 in partnership with Veolia and has a neutral carbon footprint. Made from 100% recycled polystyrene recovered from discarded refrigerator interiors, the CO2 emissions from the manufacturing process and electronic components are fully offset by Thales’ comprehensive carbon offset program.
In addition to offering a second life to refrigerator interiors and enabling an independent and exclusive green plastic supply flow to Globe for their SIM cards, Thales is helping Globe meet its ambitions for cutting e-waste, reducing its carbon footprint and contributing to sustainability in the Philippines.
“As consumers become more environmentally-conscious, the onus is on companies to innovate to introduce sustainable technology solutions to remain competitive. As a Group, Thales has pledged to get to net zero carbon emissions by 2040, and we align with the ambitions of many organizations to work for the better good and build a sustainable future. The Eco-SIM card is small, but it has a big impact on plastic and polymer waste and is another example of how we innovate to drive change. We are excited to partner with Globe on this pioneering initiative in the Philippines with a goal to roll it out throughout Asia,” said Jon Cahilig, Head of Mobile Connectivity Solutions for Asia, Thales Digital Identity & Security.
In 2019, Globe became a signatory to the United Nations Global Compact, committing to implement universal sustainability principles on human rights, labor, environment, and anti-corruption in its operations. In January 2021, Globe formally expressed its support to the globally-recognized Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD) in January. Along with more than 1,800 companies worldwide, Globe supports the framework set by TCFD and is committed to following recommendations towards effective climate-related disclosures.
To further this commitment in 2021, Globe became the first publicly-listed Philippine company to be listed by the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi) committed to set science-based targets, in line with the 1.5°C global warming scenario of the Paris Agreement and the #RacetoZero Campaign. These commitments cover both the mid-term (2030) and long-term (2050) targets.
“In order for us to truly move the needle in the fight against climate change, we all must take on the responsibility to act sustainably. This partnership with the Thales Group not only enables us to come up with a solution for our telco business, but it also gives our customers the opportunity to step up and choose to live more sustainably,” said Yoly Crisanto, Globe’s Chief Sustainability Officer and SVP for Corporate Communications.
In 2018, Globe was also the first in the country to introduce electronic SIMs or eSIM, as another alternative to the physical SIM cards. eSIMs are digital SIMs embedded in compatible mobile phone models, allowing its users to manage multiple profiles using different mobile numbers on just one device and effortlessly switch lines that fit their purpose. It also allows gadgets like smartphones and smartwatches to be connected under one mobile number.