Progress over perfection: Can McDonald's design its way out of single-use plastics?
McDonald's vice president of global sustainability Keith Kenny has claimed that the consumer-facing business needs to couple lifecycle analysis of its packaging with consumer demands in order to phase-out plastics in a secure way and without impacting customer experience.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: In the Green Room with RELX's Marcia Balisciano
The Green Room makes its long-awaited return to the edie podcast, as content editor Matt Mace discuss Sustainable Development Goals, the evolution of CSR and the notion of fear in the climate battle with RELX's director of corporate responsibility Márcia Balisciano (MBE).
Zalando: Net-zero targets the first step to net-positive businesses
EXCLUSIVE: Zalando's director of corporate responsibility and sustainability Kate Heiny believes that operating at net-zero emissions both operationally and across the value chain can act as a catalyst for businesses to truly move beyond mitigation and "less bad" to help regenerate the planet.
Embodied carbon: WorldGBC embarks on 'radical' new approach towards net-zero
EXCLUSIVE: The World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) has issued a new report outlining how companies in the sector can focus on both operational and embodied carbon to reach net-zero emission buildings by 2050, warning the companies ignoring this new approach could be "outpaced by the innovators".
Nature Needs Heroes: How Timberland is developing 'net-positive' fashion supply chains
EXCLUSIVE: Against a backdrop of fires in the Amazon, Timberland's sustainability director Colleen Vien has told edie that fashion brands are not only beginning to face up to their historic role in environmental degradation - but to begin working towards a "net-positive" vision.
How 'inclusive capitalism' can create prosperity for people, planet and profits for Firmenich
EXCLUSIVE: Fragrance & flavour company Firmenich is using an "inclusive capitalism" business model to deliver benefits for profits, the planet and people in a way that is causing others to "rally" behind the concept of sustainability.
How employee engagement is helping PayPal make environmental sustainability 'business-as-usual'
EXCLUSIVE: By gamifying actions such as saving energy and using low-carbon modes of transport, PayPal has been able to "leverage" staff creativity and team spirit to reduce its environmental impact, the firm's global lead for environmental sustainability has claimed.
Circular economies and scenario analysis: How Rolls Royce is innovating for zero-carbon operations
EXCLUSIVE: As the UK Government mulls over whether to adopt a 2050 target for net-zero carbon emissions, engineering and aerospace giant Rolls Royce is going beyond the "low-hanging fruit" as it continues on its pathway to zero-carbon operations by 2030.
TerraCycle: Recycling alone won't tackle 'root cause' of plastics waste crisis
EXCLUSIVE: Despite creating a business model built on offerings of recycling solutions to solving the world's plastic pollution crisis, TerraCycle's general manager for Europe claims it will only ever form part of any closed-loop system.
Tesco: Behaviour change will 'always have a place' in energy efficiency
As the fruits of the Fourth Industrial Revolution continue to re-shape how business operates, many companies are now turning to digital technologies for all of their energy reduction schemes. But for Tesco, behaviour change will always be a "key" piece of the energy management puzzle.
We Mean Business boss: Companies must 'embed' ESG to survive low-carbon transition
EXCLUSIVE: In the face of pressing climate challenges, the business and finance sectors must now collaborate to ensure that environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues are embedded in all financial decisions to spur the creation of a zero-carbon economy.
How Lucozade's seaweed sachet trials are spurring lasting behavior change around plastics
EXCLUSIVE: Following a successful pilot at two races last summer, Lucozade Ribena Suntory (LRS) last week confirmed that it will hand out 30,000 drinks in edible seaweed sachets at this year's London Marathon. But will these events generate lasting changes to consumer behaviour surrounding plastics?
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: In the Green Room with Pernod Ricard's Vanessa Wright
Welcome back to the green room - edie's exclusive interview hub for sustainability leaders, brought to you as part of the Sustainable Business Covered podcast. Up next to provide the insights of a leading sustainable business: Pernod Ricard's vice president of global sustainability Vanessa Wright.
Why General Mills want supply chains to become regenerative stewards of the environment
Faced with a growing global population and strains on depleted natural resources, US food producer General Mills plans to equip its supply chain farmers with the knowledge and tools to move from practices that mitigate environmental degradation to regenerative approaches.
International Women's Day: How can sustainable businesses truly promote gender equality?
EXCLUSIVE: Corporate efforts to champion women's rights across supply chains and within communities are not matched by internal actions, with some boards failing to understand the opportunities offered, making gender and inclusion activities feel like a "tick-box exercise".
How AB Sugar made sustainability its competitive edge
Faced with extreme climate-related challenges and increased calls for healthier diets, one of the world's leading sugar businesses has raised its sustainability ambitions to keep its competitive edge in a challenging economic environment.
Why sustainable business leadership must become the new normal post-IPCC
EXCLUSIVE: As businesses strive to bolster their sustainability commitments in the face of ever-growing climate challenges, policymakers must do more to make 1.5C targets the norm rather than the exception.
Ocean Rescue: How Sky's plastics campaign has ignited a wave of transformation
EXCLUSIVE: Two years on from the launch of its global campaign to educate and inspire the public and businesses to phase-out single-use plastics, Sky's head of Sky Ocean Rescue Fiona Ball sits down with edie to discuss the transformational impacts the project has had both inside and outside of the company.
A Plastic Planet: Businesses must do more than recycle to stay relevant
EXCLUSIVE: In an era of unprecedented consumer demand for plastic-free packaging and products, companies making their offerings recyclable are no longer doing enough - they must radically transform their business models to stay relevant and retain consumer trust.
Sustainable Future: How Bunzl is using the SDGs to raise its sustainability ambitions
EXCLUSIVE: Just one year after publishing the inaugural report on its Sustainable Future sustainability strategy, Bunzl Catering Supplies has moved to align itself with the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a bid to maximise its positive social and environmental impact.
SC Johnson boss: Business collaboration on plastic 'just the tip of the iceberg'
EXCLUSIVE: Consumer goods giant SC Johnson's boss has praised the ambition of the organisations to have pledged to tackle plastic packaging under a new Global Commitment, but has noted that behaviour change and closing the loop will help accelerate action.
Why Co-op hasn't signed up to the UK Plastics Pact
EXCLUSIVE: The Co-op is one of the two major supermarkets yet to commit to WRAP's collaborative agreement to tackle single-use plastics, but the company's environment manager Iain Ferguson believes that an "enterprising" approach to innovation will enable the retailer to rethink approaches to packaging.
Inside Unilever's plastics packaging strategy
EXCLUSIVE: Unilever's chief R&D officer David Blanchard has outlined the company's three-pillar approach to improving the recyclability of its product packaging, focusing on "less", "better" and "no plastics" solutions.
Primark expands Sustainable Cotton programme to Pakistan
EXCLUSIVE: Primark has announced it is expanding a sustainable cotton sourcing programme to key suppliers in Pakistan, after more than 4.4 million pairs of pyjamas made with the cotton were sold by the retailer in the UK over the last 12 months.
How the TCFD recommendations are reshaping Moody's CSR efforts
EXCLUSIVE: Moody's Corporation's global head of CSR Arlene Isaacs-Lowe believes that adopting the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) has enabled the company to become green finance "standard-setters" and champion the benefits of transparency to the wider industry.
How ING is avoiding greenwash in the new green finance era
EXCLUSIVE: ING's global head of sustainable finance Leonie Schreve believes that stronger internal relations between the finance and sustainability departments within businesses will create more access to green loans and bonds to assist the low-carbon transition.
How Coca-Cola is engaging policymakers and the public to combat plastics pollution
EXCLUSIVE: The head of sustainability at the world's largest independent Coca-Cola bottler believes the next 12 months are a "great opportunity" to influence policy to reform Producer Responsibility Obligations and implement an effective, nationwide deposit return system for plastics.
How collaborating with WWF helped Thai Union drive sustainability sector-wide
EXCLUSIVE: More corporations should consider partnering with public-sector organisations if they wish to go beyond improving their own sustainability strategies to drive industry-wide improvements, according to Thai Union’s award-winning global director of sustainable development, Darian McBain.
Sustainability a competitive advantage for business, says Nespresso boss
EXCLUSIVE: Businesses aiming to become sustainability leaders cannot ignore approaches to communication in an age where consumers and stakeholders are actively engaged on corporate approaches to societal and environmental needs, the chief executive of Nespresso has claimed.
Financial incentives for recyclability the way forward, says Co-op
A fiscal system that rewards recyclability and labelling, coupled with reducing the range of polymers available for use, would enable retailers and waste management firms to better tackle the rise of plastics pollution, according to the Co-op's environment manager Iain Ferguson.
Plastic pledges provide gateway to circular economy, says John Lewis
The recent focus on plastic pollution has given sustainability professionals an opportunity to "reframe the narrative" on resource efficiency to move business models towards the circular economy, John Lewis's sustainability manager Ben Thomas has claimed.
How Twinings is championing women's rights in the tea supply chain
EXCLUSIVE: Twinings' decision to increase its funding initiative with UNICEF for vulnerable tea farmers in Assam was built on a belief that improving skills, health and wellbeing is critical to securing the long-term security of the supply chain, the company's head of social impact has revealed.
Primark's Global Sourcing Map emphasises the importance of brand transparency
Primark's decision to publish a Global Sourcing Map to its website is part of an ongoing journey of supply chain transparency, and a reflection that there is a greater appetite amongst retailers to collaborate on societal and environmental issues.
Eurostar to set science-based target and halve use of plastic
High-speed rail service Eurostar has pledged to halve the amount of plastic it uses over the next two years, with the organisation's energy and environment lead Rebecca Cranshaw revealing that a science-based target to reduce emissions should be in place later this year.
Ex-BT chief Niall Dunne on a mission to create the 'Tesla of plastics'
BT's former chief sustainability officer Niall Dunne is determined to use his role as the new chief executive of plastic producers Polymateria to "redesign the rules of an entire industry" and create practical solutions that can eliminate plastic pollution.
Circular and digital transformations 'key' to enabling business growth
A growth in circular innovation and digital transformation are the "keys to a more sustainable future" that is currently being hindered by businesses that still view sustainability as an "add on" that requires additional resources and finances.
Starbucks targets a plastics circular economy to drive waste management
EXCLUSIVE: There is no "competitive leverage" to be gained by failing to work with rival brands to tackle ongoing waste issues regarding paper coffee cups and the wider use of plastics, Starbuck's vice president of corporate affairs Simon Redfern has claimed.
Sustainable Business Covered podcast: In the green room with Unilever's Tony Dunnage
Welcome back to the green room - edie's exclusive interview hub for sustainability leaders, brought to you as part of the Sustainable Business Covered podcast. Up next to provide the insights of leading sustainable business: Unilever's group director of manufacturing sustainability Tony Dunnage.
How the SDGs can create a framework to fix a 'broken' agriculture sector
Businesses must collaborate to create global platforms that can fix a "completely broken" agriculture system in a way that improves land management and farming practices that can drag smallholders out of poverty.
Water risks still 'invisible' to finance sector, says ING
Commercial banks are struggling to overcome a communications barrier with businesses to gain insight into portfolio risks specifically associated with water, according to Dutch bank ING's vice president for sustainable finance Ambika Jindal.
Will the role of a sustainability professional ever become obsolete?
As sustainability becomes more embedded in core business operations, will the role of a sustainability professional ever become obsolete? Not in the eyes of Asda's sustainable business director Chris Brown, who believes an ever-changing CSR agenda makes the role more important than ever.
Cross-sector collaboration crucial to embed technological innovations, says Vodafone
The fourth industrial revolution looks set to introduce an era of technological disruption that will heighten the need for a "strong political hand" and enhanced cross-sector collaboration to drive efficiencies, according to Vodafone's senior environment manager Nicki Woodhead.
Kering championing 'disruptive' innovations to push towards science-based targets
Luxury fashion group Kering is partnering with "disruptive" new minds to uncover innovations that will help reach ambitious science-based targets, and the firm's chief sustainability officer Marie-Claire Daveu wants to pass these learnings to the sector through an open-sourced approach.
Christiana Figueres: Corporate leadership on climate change set to hit critical mass
Former UN climate change chief Christiana Figueres has expressed confidence that the amount of businesses taking a leading stance on the Paris Agreement goals will hit critical mass "pretty soon".
How AkzoNobel intends to reach carbon neutrality by 2050
AkzoNobel will need to embrace disruptive technologies such as automation and ensure the commitment of customers and suppliers to meet the paint and coating manufacturer's bold vision to become a carbon-neutral business by 2050.
The Climate Group: Boardrooms finally grasping business case of climate action
Amid a flurry of high-profile corporate sustainability commitments, the Climate Group's chief executive has told edie that improved boardroom understanding around the business case of climate action has enabled the low-carbon agenda to flourish.
The Body Shop takeover could mark 'major turning point' in corporate sustainability movement
The recent takeover of The Body Shop by an ethically-minded global cosmetics firm could represent a "major turning point" in the transition towards the private sector operating as a "force for good".
Policy must catch up with business 'ingenuity' on resource efficiency, says Corporate Leaders Group
Business "ingenuity" on resource productivity has "moved ahead of the policy agenda" and politicians need to introduce new legislation that fosters the circular economy and service-based business models, according to the director of The Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group (CLG).
Investing in business means investing in people, says Veolia
Businesses must diversify their workforce to nurture the next generation of CSR leaders, according to waste management firm Veolia's senior executive vice-president UK & Ireland.
Business 'crusade' built on leadership can deliver zero-carbon buildings, says NG Bailey
EXCLUSIVE: The biggest barrier on the pathway to zero-carbon buildings is a lack of "appropriate leadership" from Governments, although this has presented the private sector with an opportunity to train and retain the next generation of sustainability leaders.
Decentralised energy will revolutionise sustainable business, claims Mongoose Energy boss
EXCLUSIVE: Businesses that invest in decentralised energy systems can enjoy the triple benefit of economic value, security of supply and "telling a good story", the new chief executive of community energy supplier Mongoose Energy has told edie.
Customers at the heart of sustainable business model transition, says HP
EXCLUSIVE: Hewlett-Packard's (HP) push towards a circular economy and servitisation-based business model has seen the relationship between the IT company and its customers evolve from one based purely on transactions to a point where customer demand is now helping to advance closed-loop initiatives.