Corporate Sustainability by Jonathan Atwood Synthesis Essay
Corporate sustainability aims at ensuring a long-term corporate growth coupled with meeting the needs of the stakeholders while considering social issues and protection of natural resources, which are critical for the future generations.
Social and environmental issues are essential in the growth of business and many companies across the world have realised that corporate value goes beyond financial performance metrics and legal compliance.
Companies that have recognised the importance of corporate sustainability and embraced sustainability strategies have enjoyed an increase in business profits as it offers them an opportunity to adjust their business models, thus making them more competitive in the market.
One of the core drivers of corporate sustainability is the realisation that there is a need for environmental management by having ecological friendly production systems. Global warming has become one of the most pressing issues affecting people across the world and the fact that there is no international agreement to limit global climate effects has even worsened the situation.
In the past, industries have been significant contributors of carbon dioxide emission in the atmosphere in a situation that has led to climate change. This aspect has contributed to unpredictable increase in the prices of natural resources due to their scarcity.
According to an article by Atwood (29 August 2013) on corporate sustainability, companies have realised that they are responsible for preserving the environment for the benefit of future generations. Companies have realised that climatic change is critical for as it poses a potential threat to the disruption of business operations and supply chain.
Also, they now appreciate the fact that environmental protection is ideally the promotion of healthy living among people worldwide, which depends on fresh air, water, and food for survival and this aspect has spurred corporate sustainability among different corporations worldwide. This aspect, in addition to risk management, sustainability issues have dominated and become more prevalent in companies agendas.
The main objective of this move is to mitigate the problem of shortages of natural resources such as water, oil, animal-based resources, and coal among others, and promote healthy living and avoid extreme weather for the benefit of the current and future generations.
This change of perception is an essential step by the companies in ensuring the welfare of the society, as they are responsible for promoting the performance of their customers through efficient products, which are environmentally friendly.
The high rate of unemployment has contributed to most people globally living in extreme poverty conditions of less than a dollar per day. Though governments have tried to reduce the poverty levels, the process has been futile, especially in developing countries where unemployment levels are still high.
Poverty has been known to be one of the major hindrances to development as most governments already strained resources are used to aid the poverty-stricken people. Also, poverty has contributed significantly to high levels of illiteracy, as people cannot afford to take their children and leads to early marriages for teenage girls.
Worldwide, most notable corporations have noticed that they have a role to play in response to poverty issues affecting the society for the benefit of the low-income earners. In a bid to curb this menace, the corporate sector has realised the need for creating employment, thus paving the way for wealth generation opportunities.
Therefore, according to this report by Atwood (2013), poverty has been another core driver of change as the vibrant corporate sector has realised that it can aid the society greatly by promoting employment to reduce poverty levels through community development activities, gender equality courses, and containing conflicts especially in conflict-prone areas where people fight for the scarce resources.
This report holds that corporate sustainability lies in holistic development of corporations to encompass environmental sustainability and the marginalised groups, among others.
Sustainability report by Avery Fellow (New approach to compliance)
According to this article by Fellow (23 May 2013), the issue of sustainability continues to gain prominence on the corporate agenda, and thus there is a need for a new approach to compliance to ensure its success. Governments and corporate executives have a great role to play in ensuring the and ensuring that companies are more effective and transparent.
This goal can be achieved by abiding by social and environmental regulations and being supportive of corporate philanthropy. The article by Fellow (23 May 2013) underscores the importance of transparency by companies on issues related to the environment by analysing the impacts that the existing products have throughout their lifecycle from their production to disposal.
Understanding the lifecycle of the products is very useful as this information aids in improving environmental performance. The data helps in identifying products that have adverse effects to the environment, especially when they are disposed. Companies then can come up with ways to improve them so that they will not affect the society while still maximising on goals and targets.
It is very important for corporations to adapt to sustainability strategies for its products locally or internationally that meet specific environmental targets in terms of consumption and disposal.
The government on its part should ensure that the regulations are enforced coupled with rewarding the companies that go an extra mile towards effective conservation of the environment, as this move will encourage other companies to follow the same.
The report also deals with the issue of greenhouse gas emission to the atmosphere, which comes from companies. Companies are known for producing toxic gases and they are therefore advised to reduce the levels of poisonous gases to avoid further catastrophic changes in climate in the future, which can have irreversible impacts on the environment, economy, and even human health.
They need to know that air pollution is an issue of significant concern and it cannot be justified based on shareholders returns. One way of avoiding air pollution is the capture of the greenhouse gas and storing it underground and not allowing it to escape to the atmosphere using advanced technology.
Corporations can also be actively involved in informing the public on the importance of planting trees and participate in reforestation especially in places where deforestation has occurred, as this move will help in the absorption of any poisonous gas from the company or any other source.
Trees are very practical and useful in the purification of the air and controlling climate and this aspect is essential for the of the business globally.
The corporate bodies should also ensure that they establish assurance programs such as internal audit to be conducted regularly throughout the year to help in making sure that companies comply with the rules and regulations that have been set by the government regarding environmental protection.
In addition, corporations should build friendship with experts in the field of environmental conservation for expert advice on solutions to to environmental pollution.
This process leads to the sharing of useful ideas and the participation of employees, which increases the passion of the program itself as employees will be interested in a company that is unswerving towards environmental protection and be informed on the established policies regarding environmental issues.
This report by Fellow (23 May 2013) insists that stakeholders have embraced the fact that companies should engineer and nurture corporate sustainability.
Corporate responsibility and sustainability by PR Newswire ()
According to this article by PR Newswire 17 September 2013), sustainability in todays society can be said to be one of the driving forces of any corporation that is interested in growing now and in the future. Corporations should to change their approach and come up with effective ways that can lead to reduction of cost of production as well as being friendly to the environment.
Due to the increased demand for products, companies have resorted to using large amounts of energy that contaminate the environment, thus affecting millions of livelihoods across the world. According to the article released by PG & E, this situation can be avoided by the corporations investing heavily on technology and coming up with friendly renewable sources of energy that do not pose a threat to the environment.
While keeping growth objective in mind, companies can embrace new technologies and come with renewable sources of energy that can be produced from turbine or solar energy.
Turbines and solar energy can produce high megawatts that can be used in industries to replace the use of fossil fuels that contaminate the environment. This innovation is useful as it creates new avenues for revenue improvement and value creation as well as ensuring environmental restoration.
Companies that produce products, which result in the massive amounts of waste after consumption, should also come up with ways to avoid the pollution menace if they are concerned towards achieving sustainable environmental conditions. The presence of large amounts of garbage can have detrimental effects on the environment if no action is taken and this aspect affects the possibility of a better future.
However, this scenario can be avoided by recycling the products. Recycling of products has a great advantage to any company as it can lead to the generation of energy, which reduces the cost of production while increasing the value of the companys products as the consumers see them as environmentally friendly.
In addition, recycling is very beneficial as it aids in the preservation of natural resources as used materials are recycled to new products and hence there is no need to process raw materials and this move leads to conservation for future use. Recycling of materials further helps the company to save more energy as recycled materials use less energy as compared to raw materials.
This report also indicates that companies should also be committed towards the production of wares that target all types of customers, including the low-income earners. Companies should not only be interested in the profit margin, but also on how they can add value to the disadvantaged in the society.
This goal can be achieved via the companies working with both suppliers and governments to ensure that the products they produce are also affordable. This way, the products will not only be available to the well off in the society, but also to the marginalised groups.
Companies should also be involved in sustainability agenda in a bid to be part of the team providing solutions to curb the vice of corruption by spreading international norms and standards that discourage any kind of fraud, which has led to the widening gap between the rich and the poor.
Generally, this article by PR Newswire indicates that stakeholders are slowly accepting that corporate sustainability is a collective responsibility of everyone with corporations taking the lead in adopting novel technologies to address common challenges like pollution.