Let's be honest, talk to the average Brit and he or she is unlikely to have much of a good word to say for BT.

With a reputation for poor customer service and an obstructive attitude (to say the least) to telecoms competition, it's never going to be the UK's favourite company.

But in one respect, it's ahead of the game when it comes to British companies. It was one of the first to recognise the importance of reducing its carbon footprint, first to start measuring it - in 1996, no less - and, more importantly, the first to do something about it. So much so, that it claims to have reduced its carbon footprint by 58 percent since that first measurement. It's also looking to cut its CO2 emissions by 80 percent by 2020.

Now, that commitment has been recognised globally by the International Telecoms Union's choice of David Faulkner to chair the new ITU focus group on climate change. As ICT is responsible for about two or three percent of carbon emissions, we're not talking about switching a few light bulbs off.

The UK has not really been seen as a prime mover in reducing carbon emissions so it's cheering to see BT's expertise recognised. BT has shown that there's no contradiction in being a business-driven company and seeking to reduce its carbon emissions.

I'd never thought I'd say this but well done BT. (I can always go back to bashing the company next week.)