Verizon pledged to provide digital skills training for millions of people and become carbon neutral by 2035 as part of a new business plan focused on advancing initiatives for social good.

CEO Hans Vestberg stated the plan was a “significant commitment to move the world forward through the power of action and technology” in the wake of the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, adding “there has never been a more critical moment to demonstrate the power of purpose”.

It plans to train 10 million school-aged children by 2030 through an education platform it is developing, which will provide teachers with resources for remote learning, technology guidance for schools, digital literacy training for parents and educational content for students.

By the same year, it also promised to equip 1 million small businesses to participate in the digital economy, and launch a programme to provide digital workforce training for 500,000 individuals, primarily workers in vulnerable communities, with the goal of placing at least half into paid employment within three months.

Verizon plans to achieve its goal of becoming carbon neutral through a combination of reducing emissions, investing in renewable energy and purchasing carbon offset credits.

The operator previously set a target of using 50 per cent renewable energy by 2025, and was among more than 50 operators which signed up to a GSMA-led initiative to address climate change in September 2019.