Sustainability Roundup - July 2016

July 11, 2016
By Adriana Salazar

As we pass the half-year mark, this month has been a busy one in sustainability news, events, reports, studies and more. With vast amounts of information to choose from, below is our ‘sustainability roundup’ for the past month, including 10 noteworthy resources:

1. IKEA Argues for Businesses to ‘Go All In’ on Sustainability

Greenbiz reports how IKEA is skipping the trend of step-by-step climate action and incremental targets in favor of long-term goals for a complete green overhaul of their business strategies. IKEA has promised that by 2020 the company will have a net positive impact on the environment. Steve Howard, chief sustainability officer at IKEA, describes this tactic as “going all in”. Read more

2. (Video) GRI Standards: Have your Say!

The Global Sustainability Standards Board (GSSB) is transitioning the G4 Guidelines into GRI Sustainability Reporting Standards (GRI Standards). In line with GRI’s longstanding multi-stakeholder approach and Due Process Protocol for standards development, the exposure drafts of GRI Standards are open for public review and comment until 17 July 2016. Read more

3. Using Enterprise-Class Software to Foster the Sustianable Development Goals

Rather than shying away from the SDGs as a set of high-level goals covering vast and complex global issues such as poverty, food and water security, education, and health, companies should utilize them as an ‘overarching standard’ or aspirational guide, against which to measure their CSR strategies and extract ESG indicators, to be measured, monitored for improvement, and reported on. Managing data to make smarter business decisions through enterprise-class software can contribute to multiple social and environmental goals, including key SDG targets. Read more

4. (Report) 2016 SustainAbility and GlobeScan Annual Sustainability Leaders Survey

SustainAbility and GlobeScan’s annual Sustainability Leaders Survey asks over 900 expert stakeholders representing business, government, NGOs and academia across 84 countries to evaluate the progress that institutions have made since the 1992 Rio Earth Summit and reflect on their expectations for the next 20 years. Experts are also quizzed on the best pathways for business to act on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Read more

5. How the Private Sector is Redefining the Role of the Water Professional

This analysis by Alex Mung, Head of the World Economic Forum’s Global Water Initiative, takes a look at how, beyond traditional career paths in government, academia or NGOs, a new field is opening up in response to escalating exposure to water risks. The private sector and entrepreneurial start-ups are transforming roles and responsibilities to become part of the water solution. Find out more

6. How Brexit looks like from South Sudan, China and elsewhere

Some months ago, former UN leaders and charity chiefs published an open letter warning attempts to tackle global poverty and climate change could be damaged by UK’s departure from the EU. In this brief but interesting read from The Overseas Development Institute (ODI, the UK’s leading independent think tank on international development and humanitarian issues), ODI experts in Asia and Africa take a look at how the news of the UK’s vote to leave the European Union have been received by the developing world. Read more

7. What’s Driving the Next Generation of Green Products?

A recent study from the University of California’s Berkley Haas School of Business investigates consumer behaviour when purchasing sustainable products, such as hybrid electric vehicles. Before making purchases, for instance, consumers evaluate how their decisions will stack up against their peers’, and whether they will make them appear more socially responsible. Read more

8. 110 Nobel Laureates Call Out Greenpeace’s anti-GMO Stance

Reopening the public controversy around genetically modified organisms (GMOs), 110 Nobel Prize winners have published an open letter against Greenpeace’s position on GMO ‘Golden rice’. This article by Sustainable Brands gives a good introduction to both sides of the argument in a debate worth understanding more carefully. Read more

9. Making Sustainability Part of the Corporate DNA

A UN meeting of leaders from the business, government and non-profit sectors held on the last week of June showed that there is still a long way to go in order to make investors and CEOs true partners in sustainability: “We are still ruled by the ‘terror of or’, said CEO of Italian electricity company ENEL, Francesco Starace: fuel-saving or fast, fair or cheap, sustainable or successful. It is this climate that still determines the decision-making of economic leaders all over the world”. Read more

10. (Report) UN Global Compact ‘Global Opportunity Report’

Identifying and ranking 15 sustainability opportunities according to public and private sector interests and potential impacts on societies and business, this UN Global Compact report aims to demonstrate how global sustainability challenges and risks can be seen as opportunities. The 2016 report stems from a survey of 5,567 business, governmental and social leaders across five continents. Go to source

Until next month, we hope this roundup will have pointed you towards new resources and news to help you stay updated on all things sustainability!