Over the past decade, the terms Sustainability, Climate Change and Corporate Responsibility have become central in discussions between policymakers, company board members, media, consumers and the society in general. While the concept has reached the mainstream, opportunities still exist for implementation, while at the same time new technologies and policies will require from organizations to provide innovative solutions, services and products. Here are the hottest trends to watch for and prepare for 2020 and beyond:
- Through the recent European Green Deal, the goal is for Europe to become the first carbon neutral continent by 2050. The first steps will be the provision of a sustainable investment fund (1 trillion euros) for the next decade, as well as a more demanding Climate Legislation. The European Green Deal will be based on four pillars: the Emissions Trading System, Sustainable Investments, Industry policies, and Fair Transition and will affect directly existing business models and thousands of European organizations they have not integrate sustainability strategies.
- The shift to circularity will become more and more obvious, and a $24 billion stimulus package has been announced to facilitate circular economies in Europe.
- End of Plastic. The need to protect the marine environment will take center spot in the environmental agenda. To this direction, biodegradable alternatives to plastic will become more common, along with policies to ban single-use plastics, in an effort to protect the marine environment and biodiversity.
- European companies will focus more on climate change, energy efficiency, sustainable operations and sustainable supply chains while new legislation and investor requirements will push for more transparency.
- More sustainability (ESG) reporting is expected, and the reach of the GRI (Global Reporting Initiatives) and other related standards will continue to grow as companies seek to improve transparency, integrity and reliability. Integrating Reporting will not become the new trend yet, despite several publications that refer to this issue.
- Sustainability report will evolve. Reports will rely more on graphs, info-graphics and videos and not only on words in order to capture faster and easier the attention of the readers.
- Measuring performance and impact is becoming more and more important and a requirement from investors. Specifically, measurements will be required for demonstrating activities and their impacts to stakeholders improving decision-making as programs evolve over time, and align sustainability activities with corporate goals.
- Expect to see more formal education for C-Suite Executives in corporate social responsibility and sustainability due to increased complexity and investor’s expectations.
CSE is a leading boutique firm operating globally that specializes in maximizing business impact in Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility. CSE helps professionals advance their careers through our certified on-site, online (www.Sustainability-Academy.org) and group training services globally and supports companies and organizations grow and excel through Sustainability consulting and coaching.