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Module 4: Responsabilité

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Accountability

Lesson Summary

Overview of Accountability

Accountability involves acknowledgement of responsibility by an organization for actions, decisions, products and policies that it undertakes.

Businesses that clearly communicate the positive and measurable impact that they have on all stakeholders impacted by their operations are being transparent.

Sustainability reporting is a tool to communicate to society the actions a company is making to fulfill its responsibilities to society.

Uneconomic growth is economic growth that results in a decline of quality of life.









Sustainability Reporting

Sustainability reporting has two main goals which are:

• Documentation and assessment of an organization’s environmental and social impact

• Communication of a company’s sustainability efforts and progress to stakeholders

Sustainability reporting is also known as “triple bottom line” reporting as it takes into account the economic, environmental and social “bottom lines” of a company.

Sustainability efforts can be difficult for businesses due to lack of understanding of sustainability, difficult to access data, the need to coordinate across various units, and lack of a clear vision and management strategy.




Sustainability Reporting

Radical transparency is voluntary and involves providing a clear picture to the public of all good and bad parts of the company. It has been supported by the rise of social media.








Sustainability Reporting Process

The steps in the sustainability reporting cycle are:
• Define performance goals and metrics
• Measure performance
• Evaluate performance
• Manage performance

Defining the performance goals and metrics involves defining the sustainability goals of the business in order to guide the rest of the process.

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are performance measures from operational data that is used by organizations to track a particular activity.










Sustainability Reporting Process

Sustainable performance indicators (SPIs) are key performance indicators used in sustainability reporting. They are used to measure a company’s sustainability performance and to monitor and report on future progress.

Sustainable return on investment (SROI) determines the full value of a project by assigning monetary values to environmental and social indicators.

To measure performance data needs to be collected, validated for accuracy, and stored.

In the Evaluate Performance phase raw data is converted into useful performance information and knowledge for businesses to make informed decisions.

Eco-labels provide an indicator of the sustainability of a product or service to the customer.







Sustainability Reporting Process

Data analysis often includes database-driven reporting, spreadsheet analysis, and statistical tests.

Normalization involves removing the impact of factors that may influence direct comparisons of SPIs.

Greenwashing occurs when a business is misleading about their engagement in sustainable business in order to look more green than it actually is.

Corporate annual sustainability reports are used by businesses to report out annual progress on sustainability initiatives.

Registries are organizations that allow other organizations to report sustainability information.







Sustainability Reporting Process

The Manage Performance step involves action and is the final step in the sustainability reporting process where management reacts to sustainability performance.






Sustainability Reporting Guidelines & Certification

Guidelines help businesses determine how to report on their sustainability performance.

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) provides a consistent way for companies to voluntarily measure progress on economic, environmental and social performance of their businesses.

Certification happens when individual facilities and organizations undergo assessment by a third-party auditor. If the facility meets requirements then it can earn a certificate.

Certification can help purchasing agents of companies select a supply chain that uses sustainable practices.



Sustainability Reporting Guidelines & Certification

Fair trade certification offers producers improved terms of trade by paying them a “fair” amount for the commodity they produce.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is an environmental building certification system.

The LEED sustainable building design program involves organizations choosing sustainable practices to undertake when constructing/renovating buildings. Organizations can earn points for those projects in order to become certified. There is also silver, gold and platinum certification.




Life Cycle Management and Sustainability

Life cycle thinking considers the total impacts of an activity, product, or service from its origin to its end.

Life cycle management is a systematic progress of organizing, analyzing and managing of sustainability impacts throughout the entire life cycle of a product, process, or activity.

The three key phases of a life cycle are the cradle, gate, and grave.

Activities occurring before the organization are known as upstream. Activities occurring after the organization are known as downstream.

Different types of life cycle management include: cradle to grave, cradle to gate, and cradle to cradle.







Life Cycle Management and Sustainability

A carbon footprint measures all greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with the life cycle of a product, service, or business operation.

The Greenhouse Gas Protocol corporate standard is an accounting tool for government and business leaders to understand, quantify, and manage greenhouse gas emissions. It considers three different scopes.

Scope one: Direct emissions from an organization’s operations
Scope two: Emissions from energy purchased by the organization that are generated outside of the organization
Scope three: Emissions from sources outside of the organization but related to its business activities.

Water footprint is an indicator of water use that looks at both direct and indirect water use.