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GLOBAL GOALS FOR SUSTAINABLE GAINS: THE UNITED NATIONS SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS, PART II | Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, Pennsylvania

By on November 10, 2021 0


Abstract examples have been provided, but a deeper dive is warranted. When preparing to incorporate one or more SDGs into your business strategy, it is advisable to first identify your organization’s strengths and weaknesses in sustainability as well as contributing factors. Once identified, this information should be the subject of inclusive internal conversations with stakeholders to discuss SDGs that align with areas where the organization is doing well and which SDGs align with areas where there are room for growth. Once your organization has 1) established which SDG (s) it will focus on; 2) measured its current success, or room for improvement, in this area (s); and 3) set reasonable goals and pathways for achievement accordingly, then it should determine how it will share this information externally.

Based in Sweden Volvo cars innovated on his first American factory in Berkeley County, South Carolina, in 2015. The 2.5 million square foot facility occupies 1,600 acres and employs nearly 1,500 people. In 2021, Volvo received the highest possible rating for durability of EcoVadis, a globally respected corporate sustainability assessor. EcoVadis assessments assess the sustainability of companies’ supply chains and report on four main aspects: environment, labor and human rights, ethics and sustainable purchasing. EcoVadis recognized Volvo’s extraordinary sustainability efforts, including those aimed at reducing carbon emissions, prioritizing diversity and inclusion, and defending labor rights. When it comes to carbon emissions, Volvo has set a target of reducing its lifecycle carbon footprint per vehicle by 40% by 2025, and becoming carbon neutral by 2040. Volvo plans to ” achieve this by tackling carbon emissions in its manufacturing network, its supply chain and through the recycling and reuse of materials. In his Annual report 2020 to investors, Volvo underlines its commitment to supporting the SDGs, stating that “[t]The SDGs serve as our guide, where we focus on and address 5 of the 17 goals [Nos. 5, 8, 11, 12, and 13] thanks to our sustainable development strategy.

BASF, the world’s largest chemical company, is carrying out its progressive program sustainability initiatives by developing solutions for customers that “combine economic success, environmental protection and social responsibility”. With approximately 17,000 employees in North America and sales of $ 18.7 billion in 2020, BASF is the North American subsidiary of BASF SE based in New Jersey, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has three locations in South Carolina, all of which currently offer BASF services Earn and Learn Program, which “aims to meet future talent needs for a skilled and diverse workforce of technicians with a focus on attracting more women”. This program is part of BASF’s North American Learning Development Program (NAADP). NAADP apprentices receive a full-time hourly wage that increases over the course of the program and includes benefits. In addition, participants gain on-the-job training and earn a certificate in process technology from a local technical college. BASF covers tuition, books, and fees associated with the certificate program, and apprentices are considered for full-time positions with BASF upon completion of the NAADP. BASF, which has been “actively involved in the development of the SDGs as a member of working groups”, has a dedicated web page describing its support and contributions to each of the SDGs. In 2017, BASF was recognized by the Global Compact Network Canada (GCNC) for outstanding efforts to advance the SDGs. The theme of GCNC that year was SDG 17, Partnership for the Goals.

You don’t need to adopt practices and report on all 17 SDGs. In fact, it could do your organization more harm than good by exposing you to potential allegations of greenwashing if you distort what you really do or produce. It may be better for your organization to effectively pursue and report on 1 to 2 SDGs than to demand more and prepare your organization for allegations of misrepresentation. Although the 17 SDGs are addressed to varying degrees by BASF on its ODD webpage, for example, the company is raising 10 of the 17 (# 2, 3, 6, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 15 and 17 ) as being “of great importance” to the business. In the same way, Microsoft’s SDG report presents relevant business information for each of the 17 SDGs in two separate sections: “The SDGs we focus on” (Nos. 4, 8, 13 and 16) and “The SDGs we are contributing to” (Nos. 1 , 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15 and 17).

In addition, a sustainable approach to the SDGs is essential. How and if your business strategy aligns with certain SDGs can change as your organization evolves and becomes more intentional when it comes to sustainability. It would not be surprising if Microsoft, for example, moved one or more SDGs from its “contribute” section to its “focus” section, or vice versa, in future SDG reports. Your organization should remain open to adapting its approach to pursue the SDGs based on considerations such as stakeholder feedback, industry trends, social concerns, new data, and technological advancements.

Boeing, the largest exporter of manufactures in the United States and the largest aerospace company in the world employs over 140,000 people in ten states of the United States, of which more than 5,000 are located in South Carolina. Boeing opened its North Charleston, South Carolina site in 2009. Boeing South Carolina was the company’s first 100% renewable energy site, with up to 20% powered by solar panels installed on the roof. In January 2021, Boeing announced his engagement to develop commercial jets equipped to fly on 100% sustainable fuel by 2030. At the time, the company had already carried out successful test flights “by replacing petroleum-based jet fuel with 100% fuels. sustainable solutions to meet the urgent challenge of climate change ”. Current fuel specifications allow only a 50/50 blend of durable and conventional jet fuel. In addition, through educational programs, Boeing South Carolina has reached more than 100,000 middle and high school students across the state. In his Sustainable development report 2021, Boeing highlights the SDGs that align with its practices in people (Nos 3, 4, 5, 8 and 10), products and services (Nos. 3, 8, 9 and 13), and operations (Nos 3, 8, 9, 12 and 13).

Regardless of your industry or the size of your business, there is something in at least one of the SDGs that your organization needs to adopt, implement, and use as a business development tool. The SDGs are seen as interconnected, therefore the success of one promotes the success of others. Take Action to Combat Climate Change (# 13), for example, addresses threats to life on land (SDG # 15) and underwater (# 14). Targeting good health and well-being (n ° 3) helps reduce inequalities (n ° 10) and poverty (n ° 1). Advocating for quality education (# 4) paves the way for more decent work and economic growth (# 8). The SDGs can not only serve as guiding principles for your organization’s sustainability journey, but they can also serve as themes to help you tell an authentic business story – the past, present and future of your organization. , and its place and influence on a more sustainable world.


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