Telecom energy services companies TESCOs—a sustainable solution to boosting access to communications

Access to reliable power remains a challenge for telecom operators in many emerging markets. Non-existent to poor grid infrastructure at many tower locations have driven a high dependence on diesel fuel to power such sites, increasing energy costs and carbon…

Telecom energy services companies TESCOs—a sustainable solution to boosting access to communications

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Access to reliable power remains a challenge for telecom operators in many emerging markets. Non-existent to poor grid infrastructure at many tower locations have driven a high dependence on diesel fuel to power such sites, increasing energy costs and carbon footprint for telecom operators. Estimates show that the number of bad and off-grid telecommunications sites is expected to grow by 22 percent over the next 10 years, from 611,000 to 745,000 sites.

An emerging group of companies called TESCOs (telecom energy services companies) can help replace diesel powered solutions with hybrid renewable options to bridge the digital gap and boost the livelihoods of the most underserved and unserved populations. A new report by IFC, Investing in Sustainable Access to Communications: The role of Telecom ESCOs, finds that the estimated investment need for the forecast growth in TESCO sites amounts to $4 billion by 2030. TESCOs control the power equipment at nearly half (47 percent) of all renewable energy powered sites globally, which makes them a key partner to accelerate the green transition in the telecom industry.

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