17 Apr 2019
Gabrielle Ginér is BT’s Head of Environmental Sustainability and the Chair of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Momentum for Change Advisory Committee. We had a chat to find out more about how we support brilliant careers.
Firstly, tell us a bit about your role with BT?
I've worked on BT's responsible and sustainable business programmes for about 10 years now. One of my main priorities is to help us reach our pledge of being a net zero carbon emissions business by 2045.
What is the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Momentum for Change Advisory Committee?
We review submissions of projects that look at how the world can reduce its carbon emissions while still being resilient. Momentum for Change celebrates innovative and transformative ideas that address both climate change and wider economic, social and environmental challenges.
What do you do on this committee?
I was recently appointed as Chair and I help judge the Climate Change Global Climate Action Award. The award recognises climate action that's already achieving real results in four categories; planetary health, climate natural now, women for results and financing for climate friendly investment. Along with judging the initiatives, I also get to present the winners at an awards ceremony. It's great to see their reactions and help shine the light on the extraordinary things they've done
I've been on the committee for about five years and felt honoured to have been asked to become Chairwoman earlier this year.
What do you love the most about chairing the committee?
I've always wanted to work for the UN and for me, being able to work at BT and with the UN is amazing. My favourite part is being exposed to so many great environmental projects and ideas; it's truly inspiring and gives me hope that we will be able to tackle climate change.
Has your work with the UN inspired the work you do with BT?
Absolutely, chairing the panel exposes me to some really great climate change initiatives and experts from around the world who inspire me. This helps me develop new ideas with the BT team to make a positive environmental impact. We do amazing things when it comes to reducing its carbon footprint. We've set ourselves a target to emit zero carbon emissions by 2045, we're working with our suppliers to cut their emissions, we lead the way among FTSE 100 companies for our reporting and activities on climate change and environmental sustainability and we're making great progress in reducing our plastic waste. But there's always more that we can do.
What have BT done to help reduce our plastic consumption?
We are reducing plastic waste from our products and from our operations. Our people are passionate about the topic of reducing plastics within BT and we addressed this through a recent internal campaign where more than 5,000 BT people signed our plastic pact, pledging to cut their plastic use at work and at home.
We’re putting circular economy principles into practice by reducing plastic waste from our products and from our operations. We’ve already got rid of the plastic wrapping used to deliver our phonebooks, all 22 million of them and we’ve shrunk the plastic around the SIM cards we send to customers.
Our UK catering facilities are going plastic-free too. We’ve got rid of plastic straws, switched to wooden stirrers and stopped using plastic cutlery, which will save ten million pieces over the next year. Two-thirds of the three million coffee cups we use across our sites are biodegradable and we’re investigating options to recycle the rest. We’re working with our waste contractors to increase recycling rates and we’re asking our employees to do their bit.
What drives you to take action on climate change?
I'm passionate about helping organisations take action to tackle climate change. It's a big challenge we all face, but it's rewarding to see the progress we're making. There's still plenty more we can do but what drives me is knowing the significant process we continue to make.
What has been your proudest achievement since you’ve joined BT?
It’s ensuring BT continues to be seen as a real leader on climate action.
If you're interested in joining BT you can find more about our careers here