Business Case

The latest in how organizations around the world are demonstrating the business case and ROI for environmental and social sustainability initiatives.

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DOE’s Better Buildings Partners Have Saved $3.1B, 380T BTUs

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Better Buildings Initiative has grown to include more than 900 organizations, which represent 30 of the country’s Fortune 100 companies, 12 of the top 25 U.S. employers, 12 percent of the U.S. manufacturing footprint and 13 percent of total commercial building space, as well as 28 states and close to 100 cities and counties across the nation. Even more impressive is the progress they have made through the program.

#BusinessCase: Employee-Led Sustainability Projects Have Saved Conagra $237M

Conagra Brands, Inc. is once again celebrating its employees’ commitment to sustainability throughout the organization at its annual Sustainable Development Awards.

Unilever's Sustainable Living Brands Delivered 70% of Turnover Growth in 2017

Unilever has today revealed its fourth consecutive year of growth for its ‘sustainable living’ brands, which delivered 70 percent of its turnover growth and grew 46 percent faster (a slightly slower rate than last year, when it was over 50 percent). than the rest of the business. The company says all of its brands are working to reduce their environmental footprint and increase their positive social impact; the ‘sustainable living’ brands are those that are furthest ahead on the journey.

Report: Social Purpose Now a Key Driver in Canadians’ Purchasing Decisions

Nine in ten Canadians (92 percent) would switch brands if a different brand of a similar quality had a compelling social purpose, according to new research from Kin&Co. The firm’s new report — which looks exclusively at the Canadian market — outlines an opportunity for Canada to lead the purpose and values revolution that has insofar been primarily led by companies in the US and UK.

Every Lyft Ride Will Now Contribute to Fighting Climate Change

In school, we both read Paul Hawken’s The Ecology of Commerce, and it profoundly influenced the impact we want to have in life. His book demonstrates how industry and the environment do not have to be at odds, and if we work to find the right solutions, the two can (and must) work together. We’re grateful and lucky to have Paul as Lyft’s environmental advisor.

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Competitors Agree: GHG Action Along Supply Chains Is Good for Business

Extreme weather events cost the global economy a record $320 billion in 2017. Food systems are experiencing more shocks than ever before, yet they also cause about one quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions.

‘Urban Mining’ of E-Waste 13x Cheaper Than Mining Virgin Metals

Recovering gold, copper and other metals from electronic waste – a practice called “urban mining” – is not only more environmentally friendly than extracting virgin materials, but can also be more cost effective. Newly published research shows that the revenue from selling metals recovered through recycling television sets far outweighs the recyclers’ expenses. With these offsets, it costs 13 times more to obtain these metals from ore than from urban mining.

#BusinessCase: Research Finds Hotels Saved $7 for Every $1 Invested in Cutting Food Waste

In a first-of-its-kind analysis for the hotel industry, food waste reduction programs were shown to be effective and financially beneficial. The research – which was conducted on behalf of Champions 12.3 – studied the costs and benefits of reducing food waste for 42 hotel sites across 15 countries. Over a three-year period, nearly every site realized a positive return on its investment; on average, hotels saved $7 in operating costs for every $1 they had spent on the programs.

Social Purpose Imperative in Business Triggers Capitalism’s New Zeitgeist

Welcome to the tipping point of capitalism. At a time defined by political scandals, nuclear threats, and turbulence on Wall Street, business is society’s unlikeliest hero. A series of watershed statements, reports and initiatives from some of the world’s most well-known capitalists is heralding a new zeitgeist, during which businesses are expected to exist to benefit society — not just shareholders.

B Corp Analysis Reveals Purpose-Led Businesses Grow 28 Times Faster Than National Average

New research from B Corp, a network of purpose-driven companies using business as a force for good, has revealed that certified B Corps in the UK are growing 28 times faster than the national economic growth of 0.5 percent.

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Can We Avoid the Fall of Giants?

The recent collapse of Carillion plc raises serious questions about the viability of corporate business models. This might not be an isolated event — presenting a major wake-up call for businesses, everywhere. The question is, what should be done: Can we avoid the fall of giants, or are we witnessing an inevitable process of creative destruction?

Here Come the 'Do Wellers'

In the din of companies and brands shouting about the good they’re doing, ‘purposewash’ is overtaking ‘greenwash’ as the default accusation of corporate hypocrisy. Thirty years ago, Chevron was one of the first accused of greenwash after a series of ads purporting to show its environmental stewardship commitment. ‘People Do’ showed employees protecting bears, butterflies, sea turtles and other cuddlies, but the campaign was attacked by environmentalists for glossing over the damage inflicted by Chevron operations on those creatures’ habitats.

A Beating Heart for Sustainable Brewing: For the Many, Not the Few

A new study on Ontario’s craft beer industry takes a systems-wide approach to dealing with the sustainable growth challenge, and how we can deliver shared prosperity — with important insights for brewers and industry stakeholders everywhere.

#BusinessCase: Report Reveals 36:1 Social ROI for Landscape-Scale Restoration

Landscape-scale restoration has the power to create a 36:1 social return on investment, according to two new reports from nonprofit Restore the Earth Foundation and Social Value International (SVI).

Business Case

The latest in how organizations around the world are demonstrating the business case for environmental and social sustainability initiatives.

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Climate Change and the Third Way: Adapt, Mitigate or Transform?

Grim climate change reality: The seas are rising. Terrifying hurricanes regularly raze vast, inhabited areas.

Megatrends — Why Do They Matter to Business?

We live in an increasingly dynamic and interconnected world. Conflicts in the Middle East are causing demographic shifts in Europe, e-waste from the West is being recycled in Africa and emissions from China are affecting air quality in the US. These are just a few examples of how megatrends are shaping today’s world.

4 Steps to Creating Social Impact Programs That Benefit Communities and Business

Not so long ago, there was a large disconnect between doing good and good business. While the idea of corporate social responsibility has been around since the 1960s, businesses have historically approached CSR and sustainability as a “feel good” silo or regulatory requirement — a means to improve public image reputation and mitigate risk, but not much else. It wasn't until recent years that companies discovered that social impact programs could benefit a company in more remunerative ways — increasing revenue, creating new markets, driving innovation, retaining talent, and opening the doors to new business opportunities. As such, it was rare for CEOs and CFOs to even nod their heads towards citizenship and sustainability, much less make it a priority.

Food and Fiber Sectors Cultivate Impact with Applied Sustainable Agriculture

On October 25, panelists representing both global brands and smaller local organizations convened in San Francisco to discuss their successes and potential in incorporating climate-friendly agricultural practices into their supply chains. The panel took place at The Perennial, a Bay Area restaurant committed to sustainable farming with the conviction that “food has the power to reverse climate change.” The panel discussion built on that theme, with further exploration into how the textile industry also has the power to enact positive impact on climate.

The Role of Communication in Shifting Away from Fossil-Based Supply Chains

Consumer demand for more socially and environmentally responsible products continues to rise, a trend that is increasingly putting pressure on companies to embrace materials and processes with less pronounced impacts. The business case is clear — act now or risk falling behind — yet the road to sustainability is not so cut and dry. Adopting innovative methods and exploiting new business opportunities while making them understandable and attractive to customers is a considerable challenge.

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