Converge takes strides towards sustainable development on World Telecommunication and Information Society Day

Connectivity and information have never been as strong and dynamic forces as they are today; Through the power of digital technology, these forces have changed the global economy and individual societies, bringing both positive and negative ripple effects. That’s why ICT companies such as Converge, wielding these forces has been a delicate balancing act, ensuring that it adheres to globally recognized development goals, while minimizing the ill effects of rapid spread of technology. 

Converge garnered an improved Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) rating on S&P Global’s annual evaluation of companies’ management of ESG risks, opportunities, and impacts in November 2023.

“Today we celebrate World Telecommunication and Information Society Day, with the theme of Digital Innovation for Sustainable Development. This is a theme that Converge is more than familiar with, as it has taken strides, or even leaps, to meet its sustainability commitments,” said Benjamin Azada, Chief Sustainability Officer of Converge.  

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) No. 9, on Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure has been at the crosshairs of Converge’s Sustainability Agenda, as the company expanded its pure fiber network across the country. As of March 2024, the Converge homes passed network has reached 16 million homes, and household coverage is at 60%. 

Converge President and Co-Founder (fifth from Left), Maria Grace Y. Uy and Chief Sustainability Officer Benjamin Azada (fourth from Left) are behind company initiatives to reduce waste to landfill output, such as the Countdown to Zero waste program.

In 2023, Converge took a leap to fulfill its mission to serve the unserved and underserved in launching two new products catering to the Filipino masses: Surf2Sawa and BIDA Fiber. These ‘mass market’ products aim to lower a major barrier to entry to access fiber broadband, which is affordability. In so doing, Converge aligns with SDG No. 1, which targets reducing poverty in all its forms. 

In a post-pandemic and digitized schooling environment, the fiber broadband connectivity of Converge aids in broadening access to quality education (SDG 4). On a general level, the company also contributes to promoting inclusive and sustainable growth and decent work by enabling access to job opportunities and entrepreneurial resources. 

Converge has switched to 100% clean energy to run its data center in Angeles City, Pampanga which is owned and operated by its parent company, ComClark Network and Technologies Corp.

Specific to its operations, it is focused on reducing the energy intensity of its network operations; this March the company reached a Power Usage Effectiveness of 1.53 in its Pasig data center, and 1.6 in Pampanga compared to the 1.8 PUE in 2021. This means it is surely moving towards the goal of energy efficiency. The Pampanga data center already runs on renewable energy but the company is looking for more facilities to qualify for the Department of Energy’s Retail Competition and Open Access program. 

Converge also welcomes employee and public engagement in its sustainability programs – its Zero Waste campaign, which aims for zero waste to landfill by 2030, is primarily focused on recycling of customer premises equipment but accepts e-waste donations from employees for proper disposal and handling. In a significant commitment to proper waste management, Converge successfully submitted and registered our Extended Producer’s Responsibility (EPR) Program with the National Solid Waste Management Commission.

“These developments present a glimpse of what Converge has done in 2023 and what it will continue to do in its commitment to grow sustainably in the years to come. In a fast-paced sector like ICT, adopting a sustainable mindset may seem counterintuitive as this requires taking pause and thinking long-term; however, Converge is fully committed to creating a safe and livable future for all and as it has shown, it’s not afraid to take small, measurable steps towards it,” Azada ended.