Sustaining the environment in communities we serve

At Cable One, we recognize that our future is interrelated with those around us. As a result, our environmental stewardship begins where we live and work. We are committed to adopting sustainable business practices that help preserve our planet’s natural resources and ensure the health and safety of our associates, customers, and communities.

The electronic waste cycle: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Cable One is committed to the reduction of waste generated by our business.

When it comes to the network equipment that enables our service in our customers’ homes, it’s a story of “one product, many lives.”

Because we own much of the customer premise equipment in our network – the cable modems and set-top boxes in our customers’ homes and businesses – we enhance the sustainability of our operations through reuse and recycling. When equipment returned to us is in working order, we refurbish it and redeploy it for reuse by other customers. When this equipment has reached the end of its lifecycle with Cable One, we work with brokers who resell it to network operators, often in developing countries. And if the equipment is damaged beyond repair, we may harvest it for usable parts before sending it to partners that responsibly recycle it.

It is important for us to effectively manage our resources, achieve cost efficiencies, and foster sustainability, and that is very much the case with hardware. One example relates to office equipment. When its useful life at Cable One comes to an end, we seek to find it a new home or have it ethically recycled. In 2019, we reduced solid waste by more than 40 tons by working with a broker to find secondary market buyers for nearly 300 computers and by recycling an additional 200 computers and 1,000 monitors. In 2020, despite the disruption caused by the pandemic, we equaled 2019's figures, selling more than 300 computers on the used market and exceeding 40 tons of solid waste reduction.

Another environmental commitment is to decrease paper usage throughout the company. Paper is a concern for the environment, contributing to landfill, municipal, and business waste. A cornerstone of this commitment is encouraging our customers to adopt paperless billing. Electronic bill presentation is efficient and timely, allowing us to communicate directly with our customers. Further, paperless billing streamlines the process and decreases recurring expenses associated with printing materials, postage, and labor. Overall, it helps us reduce our carbon footprint.

The value of our paperless billing initiative is brought to life even more through our partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation. To date, donations from Cable One are responsible for planting 100,000 trees, and we’re committed to planting an additional 10,000 trees each year. These new trees help offset carbon emissions while offering additional benefits, including cleaner air and water, soil stabilization and wildlife habitat. The plantings are possible because of the thousands of customers who have switched to paperless billing.

The impact of this effort is significant. Over their lifetime, 100,000 trees can absorb 8,000 tons of carbon, the equivalent of taking 6,000 cars off the road for a year. Through increased paperless billing adoption, we hope to further eliminate the use of millions of sheets of paper and envelopes per year.

Where we can’t eliminate paper and other single-use materials, we strongly promote recycling. Cable One has a recycling program for all paper, cardboard, and aluminum cans used at our corporate office in Phoenix. Every workstation has a recycling bin and there is signage throughout the offices that reinforces our sustainability commitments.

Reducing energy usage contributes to a lower carbon footprint

We believe it is important for our company, investors, and society as a whole to balance achieving both financial objectives and sustainability commitments. While our use of fossil fuels is not material to the company’s financial results, we are contributing to greater energy efficiency. Five aspects of our energy usage are discussed below.


Cable One operates a fleet of more than 1,500 vehicles to serve customers and maintain our network. The size of the fleet is dictated in part by the highly distributed nature of our service area, which comprises more than 950 communities spread over hundreds of thousands of square miles. We replace a significant number of vehicles each year, taking advantage of improvements that newer, more environmentally friendly vehicles provide in overall efficiency and fuel economy. In addition, with more customers completing self-installation of set-top boxes and modems, we have decreased the number of in-person service calls and thus vehicles on the road and miles driven.


Our corporate headquarters, which is our largest facility, is a six-story structure located in Phoenix. We completely renovated the building in 2015 and have made other improvements since then, including the installation of low-emissivity, high-efficiency windows and motion-sensored LED lighting to reduce energy consumption and costs. To help encourage the use of low emission vehicles, we have installed 10 charging stations for electric and hybrid-electric vehicles in our parking garage.


Because we educate our associates on the positive impact of reducing their own carbon footprint, many contribute personally with their own commitments. Some drive electric or hybrid vehicles and utilize the company-provided charging stations. Others carpool, take public transportation, or bike to work.


Our network is powered by dozens of utilities across our service area. Investing in innovative technology drives our focus on the devices at the end of the network – in our customers’ homes and businesses. Significant improvements continue to be made in the energy efficiency of these devices through the efforts of a wide variety of industry participants, including standards organizations in which Cable One participates. In 2019, the average energy efficiency of digital video recorders was 50% better than it was six years earlier, falling from 267 watts to 134 watts. Non-DVR set-top efficiency improved by 38% over the same time period, with the average set-top consuming 74 watts. As a broadband-first company, we lease modems that consume just a fraction of the energy of video set-top devices.

Facilitation of the virtual world

The very mission of our business helps contribute to carbon footprint mitigation — connecting people to what matters most. As we’ve learned during the pandemic, our broadband network has enabled vast numbers of people to work from home, to learn at home, and to be entertained at home, each of which can help reduce a customer’s carbon footprint. We ourselves have benefitted. During the height of the pandemic, all of our customer service representatives worked from their homes assisting record numbers of new customers to connect to our services. And while offices, classrooms, and entertainment venues will inevitably continue to reopen in due course, we expect that the substitution of online and virtual activities for many that were previously conducted in-person will continue. We are proud to help make that possible.