MTN operates in some of the most vulnerable areas in the world. We recognise that our operating countries have often limited resources to adapt and cope with environmental impact. We pride ourselves on ensuring that we continue to provide telecommunications services with little impact on the environment.
For example, MTN powers its energy intensive data centre in Johannesburg with a solar cooling system, which is the first of its kind in Africa. The system is driven by a cutting-edge technology called mirror-based concentrating solar power (CSP) that uses heat generated from the sun and has a peak cooling capacity of 330 kW.
The system consists of 242 solar mirrors covering a total area of 484 square metres, which tracks the sun to generate pressurised hot water at 180 degrees celcius. The hot water in turn powers an absorption chiller that produces chilled water that is circulated into the datacentre for cooling of IT equipment.
MTN’s head office in Fairland, Johannesburg, is powered by a 2MW methane powered tri-generation plant. The trigeneration plant is powered by methane gas which is piped over 800 km from Sasol’s Mozambique gas fields to Johannesburg, where it is then piped to MTN’s head office. The trigeneration plant at MTN is unique in that it not only generates electricity from the methane gas, but also uses a by-product of the process for cooling purposes. MTN has lowered electricity usage by approximately 37% due to the Tri Generation among other greening initiatives the company has rolled out.
MTN is modernizing its base stations, particularly those in remote areas, to enable them to work off the grid. The off-grid base transceiver station (BTS) site, at Vredesvallei, has a 35km radius coverage to serve the communities of Riemvasmaak and Vredesvallei in the Northern Cape.
MTN has been awarded the prestigious silver level certification in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) in recognition of the greening efforts it has made at its head office.