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A shift to a sustainable economy is crucial!

by Andrew James

The theme of this blog is borrowed from Dexter Galvin, Global Director of Corporates and Supply Chains at CDP (formally known as Carbon Disclosure Project).  As he says:

“The next decade is crucial in our shift to a sustainable economy and we believe corporates are at the heart of this transition.”

It seems very fitting to me that as PKF Francis Clark celebrates its milestone 100th year  we should be blogging on ‘sustainability’ in the business context.

Last week three announcements caught my eye:

1. The correlation between sustainability and business performance

His organisation has assessed companies based on their transparency, target-setting and risk awareness of corporate sustainability. The aim being ‘By ranking companies, we aim not just to highlight leaders’ best practice but to inspire all businesses to aim higher and take more action.’

And as one newspaper reported “The best performing companies based on a range of climate change measures are also outperforming the stock market…” so impetus for others to follow their lead.

To read the full press release click here.

2. More evidence of the direction of travel of the business community and the role they/ we have to play in the context of sustainability.

It is probably no coincidence that the CDP press release was issued in the same week that Sir David Attenborough made his “The Garden of Eden is no more” speech at Davos, a speech which also cited the key role that businesses can play:

“If people can truly understand what is at stake, I believe they will give permission to business and governments to get on with the practical solutions.  And as a species we are expert problem-solvers. But we haven’t yet applied ourselves to this problem with the focus it requires. We can create a world with clean air and water, unlimited energy, and fish stocks that will sustain us well into the future. But to do that we need a plan… What we do in the next few years will profoundly affect the next few thousand years.”

To read Sir David Attenborough’s speech in full click here

3. Declaration of a climate emergency

On a more local level last week also saw Cornwall Council join London, Melbourne, Manchester, Bristol and Frome in declaring a ‘climate emergency’: the declaration ‘recognises the climate change crisis and the need for urgent action’.  Further there is ambition ‘for the Council to become carbon neutral by 2030 and the report we will prepare to help us to do so, will put Cornwall on the front line in combating climate change.’

We will look to keep you informed of how the Cornwall Council seeks to implement the declaration with particular emphasis on plans that impact on business.  But for now we see this as further evidence as direction of travel that supports the assertion made at our recent breakfast briefings – ‘Sustainability in business is a must going forward

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