Top 7 Sustainability Challenges in 2016

Top 7 Sustainability Challenges in 2016

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1. Public Policy and Climate Change

Business must play a role in decarbonizing the economy and building resilience to climate impacts. But to make an impact, my business needs consistent, predictable policies to foster carbon emission reductions without compromising our competitiveness.  

2. Collaborating for Sustainability

Collaboration is critical to sustainability because of the need for systems change. Different organizations, such as businesses, NGOs, and governments, often hold irreconcilable positions. To tackle sustainability challenges, my business needs a way to collaborate with competitors.  

3. Respecting Aboriginal Rights

It's difficult to acquire free, prior, and informed consent from Aboriginal communities. My business lacks the processes and structures necessary to collaborate with Aboriginal communities, NGOs, and governments to reduce uncertainty and respect Aboriginal rights.  

4. Measuring and Reporting Sustainability Activities

There is a proliferation of sustainability rankings and reporting standards. My business needs to know how to streamline reporting to reduce redundancy, resolve inconsistencies, and produce the most positive impact.  

5. Sustaining Sustainability Efforts

Our sustainability mandate isn't embedded throughout our business. It's isolated in a separate department or within a separate group. Sustaining and extending these efforts is difficult in weak economic times and through leadership changes. We need to make sustainability fundamental to our business so that commitment to it is unwavering.  

6. Educating Consumers for Sustainability

We invest in marketing our sustainable products and services, but we're not seeing a significant change in consumer behaviour. We want to know how to market our sustainable products and services in a way that avoids greenwashing and instead positively influences consumer behaviour.  

7. Creating a Long-Term Orientation 

In an era of overnight delivery, just-in-time production, and 24h customer service, my business is forced to focus on the short term. But tackling sustainability requires long-term thinking. How can we reconcile these two realities?