Taking Responsibility for Sustainability

You cannot outsource responsibility; responsibility is something one must take oneself. By admitting that things could be better, that a change is needed, one can become part of the change, can become physically and emotionally invested in seeing the change happen and to ensuring its success.
Yet Green CO2, commenting on the recent launch of their green travel service for business, claims that the scheme, “provides employers with a CSR programme at no cost”.
The scheme itself is a good one. Providing “perks for the unperked employee”, it facilitates employees to save up to 35 per cent on the lease of a car and up to 50 per cent off travel by bus or the purchase of a bicycle, using tax relief and reductions in NI contributions. Getting people out of old, polluting cars and either into newer, more efficient ones or – even better – onto bikes or public transport is unarguably positive.
But the notion that Green CO2 can provide Corporate Social Responsibility to someone else is wrong. If every organisation taking part in Green CO2’s scheme, having signed on the dotted line, sat back on their laurels and said “well, that’s our CSR taken care of” it would be nothing short of a disaster for the planet.
Employee travel is just one aspect of the overall impact a business has on the environment. All organisations need to examine their complete environmental footprint and this will involve logistics, emissions, product design, sourcing of raw materials, HR, accounting and more. Only by taking responsibility for every aspect of their own activity can a company step beyond what amounts to token CSR gestures and transition towards true, profitable, ecological sustainability.
Taking responsibility does not mean going it alone. CSEM-BMP provides a comprehensive seminar programme and a Masters degree in Integrated Sustainability Management for Business to help organisations make the transition. Click here to contact us for further information.

You cannot outsource responsibility; responsibility is something one must take oneself. By admitting that things could be better, that a change is needed, one can become part of the change, can become physically and emotionally invested in seeing the change happen and to ensuring its success.

Yet Green CO2, commenting on the recent launch of their green travel service for business, claims that the scheme, “provides employers with a CSR programme at no cost”.

The scheme itself is a good one. Providing “perks for the unperked employee”, it facilitates employees to save up to 35 per cent on the lease of a car and up to 50 per cent off travel by bus or the purchase of a bicycle, using tax relief and reductions in NI contributions. Getting people out of old, polluting cars and either into newer, more efficient ones or – even better – onto bikes or public transport is unarguably positive.

But the notion that Green CO2 can provide Corporate Social Responsibility to someone else is wrong. If every organisation taking part in Green CO2’s scheme, having signed on the dotted line, sat back on their laurels and said “well, that’s our CSR taken care of” it would be nothing short of a disaster for the planet.

Employee travel is just one aspect of the overall impact a business has on the environment. All organisations need to examine their complete environmental footprint and this will involve logistics, emissions, product design, sourcing of raw materials, HR, accounting and more. Only by taking responsibility for every aspect of their own activity can a company step beyond what amounts to token CSR gestures and transition towards true, profitable, ecological sustainability.

Taking responsibility does not mean going it alone. CSEM-BMP provides a comprehensive seminar programme and a Masters degree in Integrated Sustainability Management for Business to help organisations make the transition. Click here to contact us for further information.

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