Sustainability has been described as capability to endure. Sustainability is the long-standing maintenance of welfare that has the social, economic, and environmental measures and covers the idea of union, a mutually dependent connection and common dependable position with every living and non-living things on earth.1
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This theoretical understanding moves well further than definitions driven by growth oriented economic perceptions, which consider humans as offering stewardship, the responsible managing the use of the resources.
There are several challenges which are experienced by companies or businesses to achieve environmental sustainability internally and externally and these challenges should be addressed through application of opportunities which are available and accessible by these organizations.
The environmental issues on earth have extended radically in the past decades and are currently among the main threats and challenges which have impacts on people lifestyles and organizations processes around the world.
All businesses have felt these effects, but usually under-developed countries which carry the highest weight. Our main goal in this paper is to discuss the trends, opportunities and challenges which are associated with environmental sustainability mostly in industries and organizations.
Environmental Sustainability Trends
Constructions, industries and urban regions are evaluating and disclosing use of energy, carbon discharge, and any other measurements associated with environmental sustainability. The landlords of commercial houses do not often have an opportunity, for instance five United States cities and three states have implemented policies which govern energy performance measurement and disclosure currently and ten other states have proposed the implementation of these policies, to support residents and investors create effective well-versed choices.
Housing, in European countries, is needed to show energy performance records and some other countries, like Australia, are employing the same strategy.2
Transparency has grown in cities and CDP requested 60 cities globally to account environmental sustainability associated information in 2011 and among them, 40 cities took action, with 35 of them taking responses from the public, which was the best idea.
CPD has increased its invitations to 150 cities worldwide and they have experienced optimistic responses, along with unexpected knowledge and dedication on climate change matters by heads of cities.2 These city leaders identified that controlling water, energy, and waste would support interests of the firms and tenants as well as improving standard of life in many approaches.
Extensive reports for environmental sustainability by urban areas and multi-national corporations have strengthened the reliable approaches to measure the efficiency of water, energy, and other environmental sustainability approaches on a global perspective.
Provided the broad local difference in environmental precedence all over the globe, the intended objective may not be a lone international standard, but a method to interpret business activities and local government into international term for measuring efficiency and identifying success.
LEED, the mechanism for ranking the housing environmental sustainability in United States, is often followed in several countries with their personal mechanisms, as landlords aspire to magnetize global tenants. United States’ EPA energy scale will soon offer precise ranking in North America and this is facilitated by the latest supportive accord with Canada.
In 2011, ISO 50001 standard was provided by International Organization for Standardization to energy organization structure, which contains conditions for measurement, certification, and accounting on energy usage.3
Reliable measurements are very vital to industries and companies while they emphasize on environmental sustainability both in their personal functions and progressively all over their supply chain. As CDP cities are not putting any efforts to rate the environmental sustainability of urban areas, they are building up an internationally cohesive background for recognizing the efficiency of environmental sustainability approaches followed by various industries and cities.
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Business organizations in United States discovered their mutual goals in 2011 and recognized that association between private and public sectors as well as collaborative plans are frequently the efficient approach to overpower barriers to environmental sustainability. Some of these shared approaches would be felt mostly in 2012 and 2013.4
The Better Buildings Challenge demonstrates the alliance between government and industries objectives in looking for carbon and energy decline and attaining these objectives as well needs support, for instance, organizations such as Greenprint Foundation and World Economic Forum have ordered reforms to loan supporting policies established by the legislative organizations to support funding of energy retrofits and more openly, states in America have realized that they can raise renewable energy installations at housing through providing inducements which would create solar power gainful for landlords within a moderately minimal time.
Jones Lang LaSalle, a section which represents companies and government bodies, observes great unused synergy between companies and government bodies in attaining environmental objectives, especially in public and private associations.5 Taking one instance, airport and public bodies usually have the surplus land which is inappropriate for profit-making asset development as huge solar energy system set up.
Environmental Sustainability Challenges
Several markets in developing divisions and in inventive companies or organizations are illustrated by great vitality and rapid rate of growth. Organizations or businesses functioning in these industries may control their environmental change or effect through creating resourceful environmental policies and approaches, or by implementing efficient environmental administration structures.
However, rate of market development can counterbalance the environmental effectiveness and achievements the firm is getting: when sales increase fast, enhancements in environmental effectiveness is required to happen at a speed quicker than market growth with the purpose of getting total environmental gains or advantages.6
This is a significant challenge which several industries and organizations have to pass through when they migrate from domestic to international markets, or from minor to mass markets. Here, products, development, business form innovations contribute greatly in harmonizing growth.
High risk scenario
The situations of minimal manageability and minimal development rates of market proposed a condition where environmental sustainability is a really complex challenge. Several ecosystem facilities and services which every person is relying on are currently gravely compromised.
This is an instance for erosion directive, air standard guideline, climate directive, and for condition services for instance fisheries, tourism, and so forth. Difficulty derives partially from the point that these gains are mutually created (several ecosystems donate to creation of similar services), and from the point that they are all spatially and partly unconnected to the structure of organization and industry.7
Consequently, new green global authority is needed to advance this difficulty, engaging several organizations from varied institutional fields, including science, economic, politics, and so forth. For example companies like PepsiCo Inc have been following an international policy on environmental sustainability. Some companies have decrease the usage of energy and water to decrease green house discharge and reduce the packaging and waste cost.
Climate change caused by human activities and its impacts on international development is an element of broader challenge of attaining environmental sustainability. It needs a change of the process and amount of output and of supply and usage.
As it was placed that the international economy is factually unsustainable currently and cannot take in more economic and increase in population without severe hazards of international destabilization or deterioration.8 It was also stated that increasing greenhouse discharges and its effects, the areas to be attended to are increased goods and services prices, raised water shortage, increased oil prices, and so forth.
Environmental Sustainability Opportunities
Industries and organizations have a technology which has considerably reduce non-renewable energy need in housing, and it is at times achievable to build houses which are fully passive and do not depend on all active systems for environmental management.
Enhancement to energy effectiveness engages decisions concerning the construction services and envelope, there are mechanical or electrical.9 Presently, insulation degrees in almost all housings are under best possible levels, and its related environmental changes, go on to rise.
Glazing technologies provide industries and organizations such as Barclays banks enough opportunities to go considerably above their performance and the incremental price of developments if minimal matched up to future substitution required by elevating prices of energy.
Industries have to invest in renewable energy technologies since they have the possible environmental standard and stand for an opportunity to create or produce future incomes. Renewable energy that abides by environmental dependable quality is usually called Green Power to differentiate it from other renewable resources, like hydroelectricity, which engage major environmental concerns such as James Bay project by Hydro Quebec.9
Enhancing the durability decreases frequent incarnate energy and expenses related with protection, repair and replacement and attaining envelope durability in the durations of cold climate interprets into huge degrees of thermal insulation located outboard of the system or organization.
Durable ends, fittings, machines and equipment must be chosen to balance the service life of the housing arrangement and envelope, or else the housing or building as a system will face challenges related with disparity durability.
Adaptability & Flexibility
Several industries, organizations, or business housings are destroyed since they grow to be outmoded and cannot efficiently contain new uses. A huge amount of retrofit and reconstruction finances are consumed by issues linking to nonflexible and maladaptive housing systems.
Adaptability and flexibility reflections in housing systems need an assessment of widespread typology, which states the essentials of function and form while relating to the peculiarities of cultural function and temporal tenancy.10 An assessment of these housing forms which have provided themselves to various series of recreation offer an appealing difference to several current testing experiments.
Environmental sustainability has been the main concern to the governments, organizations and industries since it has a great effect of their process. So as to ensure environmental sustainability, stability is necessary between protection of the ecological system, growth of the economic and protection of social and cultural welfare of the people.
Business organizations may have advantages from environmental sustainability to a higher level. This will not just decrease dangerous effects on land, water, and air but as well assist them adhere to statutory requirements.
Countries which are developed and under developed are attending to the issues of the climate change and future environment and because this has turn out to be important for companies to integrate this impression in policies of sustainability.
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- LaSalle J. Four Sustainability Trends to Watch in 2012. [homepage on the Internet]. 2012 Jan 21 [ cited 2012 April 1]. Available from: https://www.environmentalleader.com/2012/01/four-sustainability-trends-to-watch-in-2012/
- Sham A. Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Synthesis. Washington, DC: Island Press; 2005.
- McKinnon A., Cullinane S, & Browne M. Green Logistics: Improving the Environmental Sustainability of Logistics. Philadelphia: Kogan Page Publishers; 2010.
- Sharma S, & Mudhoo A. Green Chemistry for Environmental Sustainability. Boca Raton FL: CRC Press; 2010.
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- Soyka P. Creating a Sustainable Organization: Approaches for Enhancing Corporate Value Through Sustainability. New jersey: FT Press; 2012.
- Kiss K. Rise and Fall of the Concept Sustainability. Journal of Environmental Sustainability. 2011; 1: 7-18.
- Merlo M, & Croitoru L. Total Economic Value. Wallingford: CABI Publishing; 2009.