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Sustainability reporting is the tool an organization can use in order to understand both its exposure to risks and potential business opportunities. They include a number of issues that directly or indirectly relate to the company and its activities and can be of interest to different stakeholder groups that are involved with the company. It is also the process of collecting and analyzing information and data necessary for creating long term value supporting transparency in environmental, social and governance (ESG) requirements. Sustainability reporting is gradually becoming an essential business management tool, since it assists in convincing investors for the organizations long term existence. The question is no longer “should we report?” but “what and how should we report?”.
The latest research conducted by the Centre for Sustainability & Excellence (CSE), focuses on the sustainability reporting trends that companies and organizations follow in North America, on the use of specific reporting standards and guidelines, and on the external assurance practices mostly followed.
This research was conducted by analyzing more than 400 unique sustainability reports in US and Canada that have been published in 2014. These reports were published by companies of all sizes (Large, Multinational and Small-Medium Enterprises) and belong to a variety of sectors. Financial Sector, Energy & Energy Utilities and Mining are the top three reporting sectors.
The results identify and verify some very interesting trends. For example, 82% of public companies publish sustainability reports in order to disclose information and be transparent about their sustainability performance. It is also interesting that there is a growing trend for Small-Medium Enterprises to publish sustainability reports in order to increase their transparency, attract customers and grow their businesses. The number of SME’s which publish sustainability report is expected to grow in the following years.
The reporting guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) remain the most widely used guidelines for conducting sustainability reports. However, there are still large brands which do not use GRI or other guidelines. It is worth pointing out, that the percentage of companies and organizations in North America that seek external assurance remains well below the global average, raising questions about the level of transparency and credibility of the data disclosed in the sustainability reports.
The full version of the research will be presented for the very first time in CSE’s upcoming Advanced Certified Sustainability (CSR) Practitioner Training (IEMA Approved) in Houston, Texas (Feb 25th) and Toronto, Canada (Apr 14th), and will be provided complimentary with all the Online Certified Sustainability Programs through CSE’s Sustainability Academy Initiative.
For more information contact: Sustainability@cse-net.org
What was really agreed upon and which is the impact for countries and organizations
By Nikos Avlonas,
President of the Centre for Sustainability & Excellence (CSE) & Adjunct Professor on Sustainability Management at DePaul University
186 countries coming to a consensus on the need to cut greenhouse gas emissions is regarded by many observers as an achievement in itself and is being hailed as “historic”. More specifically the governments of 186 nations put forth public plans detailing how they will be cutting carbon emissions through 2025 or 2030. Countries will also be legally required to reconvene every five years starting in 2023 to publicly report on how they are doing in terms of cutting emissions compared to their plans. They will be legally required to monitor and report on their emissions levels and reductions, using a universal accounting system.
While countries’ plans are voluntary, the legal requirements that they publicly monitor, verify and report what they are doing, are designed to create a “name-and-shame” system of global peer pressure, in hopes that countries will not want to be seen as international laggards.
The new deal will not, on its own, solve global warming. At best, scientists, who have analyzed it estimate that it will cut global greenhouse gas emissions by about half enough as is necessary to stave off an increase in atmospheric temperatures of 2 degrees Celsius or 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit.
Annual pledges for adaptation to climate change
Source: The Overseas Development Institute (ODI)
What was agreed upon :
• To keep global temperatures “well below” 2.0C (3.6F) and “endeavour to limit” them even more, to 1.5C
• To review each country’s contribution to cutting emissions every five years so they scale up to the challenge
• For rich countries to help poorer nations by providing “climate finance” to adapt to climate change and switch to renewable energy.
• To peak greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible and achieve a balance between sources and sinks of greenhouse gases in the second half of this century
Future impact on business:
• More demanding corporate legislation and standards for carbon reduction in countries with no strict goals (Developing countries)
• Development of new market mechanisms in order to measure and monitor national goals for reducing carbon emissions. These new mechanisms may also apply to large businesses operating in those countries.
• The technology revolution over the past five, has really been dramatic, and it will really change the picture for carbon reduction in the future, while more funding will be applicable especially in the developing countries.
• More demand for transparency and external assurance or verification of corporate carbon footprint reductions
As conclusion, Paris is only the beginning of a shift towards a low-carbon world, and there is much more to do in the next coming years.
Sources: New York Times, BBC news
Organizer: Centre for Sustainability & Excellence (CSE)
Date: February 25-26, 2016
Location: Houston, Texas
This challenging 2-day training offered by Centre for Sustainability and Excellence (CSE) aims to give you all the latest tools and resources required to implement or upscale existing sustainability initiatives taking place in your organization. CSE courses are accredited and approved by IEMA (Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment), the leading international membership-based organization for Sustainability Professionals with more than 15,000 members based in 83 countries.
Key issues to be covered:
This training program enables participants to acquire the skills and competencies required for the effective use of the GRI Framework, GRI reports and publication of CSR/ Sustainability Reporting in alignment with the new GRI G4 Guidelines. The training provides insight on the conceptual introduction and preparation of the GRI reporting process, covers all the issues related to the dialogue with stakeholders and credibility of the reporting process, defines the content of the report and the monitoring process and explains in detail the preparation and communication of the final report.
Upon successful completion of the course, trainees will be able to submit a 2-year sustainability action plan that will enable them to earn the globally recognized certification as CSR Practitioners.
Who should attend:
CSR Professionals, Sustainability and Environmental professionals, Public Relations Communication and Marketing Managers, Human Resources Managers, General Managers.
For more information contact: email@example.com
Myclimate projects will receive honours at this year’s Climate Summit in Paris. The United Nations Climate Secretariat will be recognising them as “Global Lighthouse Activities” with the Momentum for Change Award.
During the summit, the project “Solar Energy for Education and Telephony” will be receiving the sought-after award directly from UN General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon. This project uses simple yet clever solar panel installations are used to provide families in rural regions of Tanzania with clean electricity. You can learn more about the project in this newsletter.
Another of the 16 awards will go to the innovative Solvatten technology that we use as a solution in our program for “Clean Drinking Water for Schools and Housholds” in Uganda. CSE is working closely with myclimate in carbon offsetting and reductions through its unique projects and reduction since 2008.
For more information please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
The complex matter of integrating environmentally sound choices into the supply chain has created many pressing sustainability challenges for companies and suppliers. In the recent years there has been an increasing pressure from stakeholders (investors, shareholders, customers and nonprofits) to push sustainability into the supply chain. This trend is enhanced by the launching of the Global Reporting Initiative’s new G4 guidelines, which focus more the sustainability issues of the supply chain.
Recent incidents such the factory collapse in Bangladesh and the uncovering of child labour in well-known companies’ suppliers highlight the importance of taking immediate action in this corporate area. By incorporating the supply chain into its sustainability plan a company can have various benefits, such as conservation of resources, optimization of processes, product innovations, savings of costs, increase in productivity and promotion of corporate values. But while most companies try and expand their sustainability program to include suppliers its implementation remains a struggle.
All these leave sustainability professionals in need of new ways of thinking and acting. The Centre for Sustainability and Excellence has incorporated in its Advanced Certified Sustainability (CSR) Practitioner Training (IEMA Approved) all the new legislations and the changes in the new GRI G4 guidelines that concern the embodiment of sustainability in the supply chain. Through this training, professionals can have a comprehensive overview of the matters regarding the supply chain and its sustainable transformation, as well as guidance to the actions that can be taken towards this road.
Become a qualified sustainability professional and take your organization’s sustainability strategies to the next level!
For more information contact: email@example.com
The online diploma on Corporate Sustainability has been created by CSE for professionals who want to have a recognized basic education in CSR field. Through this course you will have the chance to get a step-by-step introduction to corporate sustainability and a unique knowledge in a simple and practical way.
What makes this online course different?
The 21st climate summit, which will take place in Paris, France from 30th of November to 11th December 2015, presents a crucial opportunity to stop climate change and decrease the global temperature. The global Climate Change Conference should establish ambitious international targets against rising temperature that could devastate poor populations and create more extreme and frequent droughts, heat waves as well as flash floods.
With more than 40,000 attendees and 80 heads of state planning to converge on Paris, an ambitious agreement with strong political will, could translate words into actions. A shift to inclusive growth could be accomplished by mitigating GHG emissions through sustainable development, the use of renewable energy sources as well as efficiency upgrades. This could limit the consequences of climate change and lead simultaneously in a sustainable growth of our global economy.
How about receiving a certified training on sustainability and CSR issues and support your Firm’s Sustainable Progress and Development?
Sustainability Drives Profit. No major company strategy is complete and successful these days without an integrated Corporate Sustainability Policy.
Nowadays, most corporate executives recognize that sustainability must be integrated into a Firm’s core strategy. Unfortunately, not all executives realize why this is crucial or even worse they proudly promote their short paragraphs of the “About Us” section in their Websites, as Sustainability Initiatives. If the international business community is to prosper in the long term and help the society to build a better future, it needs to continue to scale up the ambition as well as the influence of its efforts through Sustainable Development.
To develop a clear Sustainable Development, a firm should analyze what matters most along the entire value chain. This ought to enable firms to identify the sustainability issues with the maximum long-term potential and to create a comprehensive sustainability analysis. After this analysis, translate the outcome into goals that can be extracted into business metrics and communicate properly the financial and corporate impact. Make progress in your Firm by successfully translating sustainability data to both innovative short-term as well as long-term corporate goals.
Join our Online Diploma on Corporate Sustainability: Foundation Course Certified by IEMA, and support your Firm’s Sustainable Progress and Development.
Firms have an exceptional opportunity this year to shift the world onto a path of sustainable, comprehensive and competitive development.
At the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit on 25 September 2015, world leaders adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which embraces a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, fight injustice and inequality, enhance sustainable development as well as tackle climate change by 2030.
The Global Sustainable Goals and the broader Sustainability Agenda for 2030, go much further than the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the eight targets against poverty that the Globe is committed to accomplishing by 2015. The enormous progress which took place so far, illustrates the value of such Agendas to accomplish and implement targets and goals in a global scale. Finally, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon proposes, ‘translate promises on paper to action on the ground’ supporting the new sustainability Agenda which aims to a Sustainable future for all.
Having an integrated approach to supporting sustainable progress and development on Organisations across the multiple goals, we would like to invite you to join our Global Certified Sustainability Trainings.
Learn more here