NGMN issues Energy Saving Strategies and Best Practices for Mobile Network Operators (MNOs)

Frankfurt, Germany, 05 December 2023. Today the NGMN Alliance (NGMN) issued the next publication concerning energy efficiency: “Effective Energy Saving Strategies and Best Practices for MNOs” providing the industry with further guidance on technical strategies to mitigate high energy costs.

“For the last 18 months high energy costs have put a renewed focus on technical strategies to reduce and better manage energy consumption as well as to ensure network resilience and stability”, said Arash Ashouriha, Chairman of the NGMN Alliance Board and SVP Group Technology at Deutsche Telekom. “This publication – which builds on our recent network energy efficiency roadmap (Green Future Networks: Network Energy Efficiency Phase 2) – provides MNOs with best practice energy saving and energy management techniques”, he stated.

Laurent Leboucher, Member of the NGMN Alliance Board, Group CTO and SVP Orange Innovation Networks at Orange, said “Saving energy is a must for all MNOs. Orange is proud to work in NGMN on this important topic which has immediate and ongoing relevance for the industry. We look forward to a forthcoming further publication on this topic due in Q1-2024 which will provide longer term guidance including on how Radio Access Network (RAN) sharing is a significant and cost-effective way of saving energy”.

“Sharing energy saving strategies and industry recommendations best illustrates NGMN’s efforts in adding immediate value to the industry whilst at the same time shaping the industry’s future direction through our core programmes”, emphasised Anita Döhler, CEO at NGMN Alliance.

This latest NGMN publication was developed with input from across the industry – with NGMN Partners representing operators, vendors, and research institutes. It provides a short guide to the best practices for operators to reduce and better manage their energy consumption whilst simultaneously maintaining desirable network Quality of Service (QoS) and handling a continuous increase of data traffic volume.  The report makes the following best practice recommendations:

  • Accelerate the transition from legacy networks (e.g., 2G and 3G) to more energy efficient technologies (e.g., 4G and 5G) whenever possible.
  • Deploy additional 5G/4G spectrum refarmed from 3G to increase network data throughput and capacity, and to keep up with the high data growth experienced during the past years.
  • Leverage the capabilities of the latest RAN technologies to achieve higher energy efficiency.
  • Implement Intelligent RAN energy saving features to save more energy in both 4G and 5G layers.
  • Update RAN sites with state-of-the-art energy efficient RAN equipment and antennas which facilitate all mobile generations, 2G to 5G.
  • Replace onsite air-conditioning units with energy efficient cooling.
  • Deploy renewable energy sources and battery storage units, which reduce the network dependency by electrical grids.
  • Use intelligent energy saving features together with battery storage equipment to further increase the network stability.

In addition, the report notes that the industry needs to work further to address several key areas including reducing base station ‘wake up times’ for extreme deep dormancy features and encouraging planning authorities to streamline and accelerate the approvals processes in relation to deploying renewable energy solutions at or near cell sites.

The publication can be downloaded here.

Collaboration is key to driving the industry’s most important challenges such as NGMN’s strategic pillars: Operating Disaggregated Networks, Green Future Networks, and 6G. NGMN therefore invites all parties across the entire value chain to join the Alliance in this important endeavour.


About NGMN Alliance

The NGMN Alliance (NGMN) is a forum founded by world-leading Mobile Network Operators and open to all Partners in the mobile industry. Its goal is to ensure that next generation network infrastructure, service platforms and devices will meet the requirements of operators and ultimately will satisfy end user demand and expectations. The vision of NGMN is to provide impactful industry guidance to achieve innovative, sustainable and affordable mobile telecommunication services for the end user with a particular focus on Mastering the Route to Disaggregation / Operating Disaggregated Networks, Green Future Networks and 6G, whilst continuing to support 5G’s full implementation.

NGMN seeks to incorporate the views of all interested stakeholders in the telecommunications industry and is open to three categories of participants/NGMN Partners: Mobile Network Operators (Members), vendors, software companies and other industry players (Contributors), as well as research institutes (Advisors). NGMN invites all parties across the entire value chain to join the Alliance in these important endeavours.