Gavin Anderson knows how to select the optimal location for our cell sites in Miami. His process factors in multiple data points, including climate risk scores that flag locations with a high likelihood of flooding or wildfire years into the future. Thanks to Gavin’s passion and forward thinking, this process will be automated for all our regions across the country, because we want our infrastructure to withstand climate impacts for years to come.

Employees like Gavin, a lead solution architect with our wireless simplification team, are examples of how we’re living our purpose every day by helping ensure the critical connections we create for our customers remain resilient against the negative impacts of extreme weather.

Our expertise building resilient networks has grown over time through our legacy of innovation, talented employees, and collective work across the private and public sectors, such as our resiliency work with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory to create actionable climate datasets.

As Earth Month comes to a close, I continue to reflect on how collaboration such as this drives more sustainable outcomes for our planet. I saw this firsthand earlier this month as I connected with fellow sustainability and business leaders at Reuters Responsible Business USA who shared how we are balancing stakeholder expectations for business growth, sustainable impact and reporting.

AT&T’s own approach to sustainability has evolved over the last 20 years, and the pace of progress accelerated as we joined forces with NGOs, business customers and public entities. That collaboration is inherent in the spirit of the company, and it comes to life through the passion of our employees.  

I’m energized by how our employees have been marking this Earth Month – they are collaborating with NGOs and each other to reduce e-waste, beautify our communities and teach proper recycling practices. Our most enthusiastic employees are participating in our Environmental Champions program, which advocates for adopting more sustainable practices in our work and personal lives.

Employees have embraced being the first company in Texas to use a new AI technology called Oscar, a smart trash-sorting system to help employees better sort their trash properly. And, employees and consumers are taking advantage of our device reusing and recycling programs with more than 14.8 million devices being recovered in 2022.

Our employees collaborate with others every day to apply their expertise and our technology to reduce today’s consumption, today’s energy usage, and today’s emissions. But they are equally as passionate about making decisions today that fortify our connectivity 30 years down the road. Their passion is intensified every time we see the immediate cost of extreme weather.

That’s what Gavin and many others across the country are doing. Using rich climate datasets informed through our collaboration with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, Gavin designs the solutions that help network designers and engineers harden our network for the long term against future climate-related disasters.

Through the Climate Risk and Resilience Portal (ClimRR), we are expanding our work with Argonne to include the Federal Emergency Management Agency, scaling the free availability of our climate data to first responders and civic leaders nationwide so they can assess vulnerabilities and build community resilience. We encourage you to check out the data on ClimRR, understand the projected changes for your local community and even advocate to incorporate this information into local disaster preparedness.

Helping to protect future generations begins with our actions today – collective actions – because resiliency isn’t attained in a vacuum or overnight. Gavin is one incredible example of using our climate data to fortify our network, but there are countless others who are coming together to make an impact. We know our connectivity can be a lifeline during a disaster and we’re working collaboratively to help ensure businesses and communities are connected and safeguarded against extreme weather events for decades to come.

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Charlene Lake
Charlene Lake Chief Sustainability Officer & SVP Corporate Social Responsibility