#SustyTalk: PMI’s Huub Savelkouls on ESG in the new normal
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with Philip Morris International's (PMI) chief sustainability officer Huub Savelkouls, who discusses net-zero, integrated reporting and ESG.
With edie readers working remotely or on furlough, this brand new series of video interviews keeps you connected to the inspirational business leaders who are continuing to drive sustainability and champion climate action from their own homes.
#SustyTalk is all about keeping edie’s loyal readers connected to sustainable business leaders across the world, whilst reminding us all that sustainability and climate action must go on through the current Covid-19 pandemic and beyond.
For this latest episode, edie’s senior reporter Sarah George dials Switzerland to speak with PMI’s chief sustainability officer Huub Savelkouls. Huub has been with the tobacco giant for more than 26 years, having served in various roles across its sustainability, policy and fiscal & economic affairs teams.
This interview sees Huub summarise the results of PMI’s first integrated report, published last month. The report shows that PMI has reduced its absolute emissions by 46% since 2010, as it strives to become a net-zero business by 2030.
He also discusses the broader trend towards integrated reporting, ESG’s rise up the corporate and investor agenda as a result of Covid-19, and the policy changes which would constitute a truly green recovery.
“For us, corporate strategy and sustainability strategy are actually one and the same thing,” Huub says. “I think that when you publish a sustainability report, you suggest something artificial… that there is a difference between this and the business strategy. When you speak about sustainability, people think primarily about the environment but, of course, as a tobacco company, the most material topic to us is the product that we sell and the impact on the consumer.”
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