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VIDEO: 2024 sustainability trends & predictions

January 4, 2024

The Week in Sustainability – January 1–5

Smoke stack on shipping yard

As we leave an exciting 2023, it’s time to enter a new year. Without a doubt, the sustainability sector is witnessing transformative trends and predictions reshaping how businesses operate and consumers engage. This week, we discuss our thoughts as we enter 2024 and provide an in-depth look at these key trends and predictions our team has complied:

  • Global supply chains under the microscope–The focus on transparency and public reporting within global supply chains has become more pronounced. This year, we’re seeing a significant shift towards improving data accessibility, with large corporations and smaller suppliers under increased scrutiny. The emphasis is on creating a transparent supply network where every participant is accountable for their sustainability practices.
  • The rise of technological integration–Integrating digital tools is set to revolutionize sustainability practices in supply chains and beyond. Developers and industry leaders expect these technologies to streamline processes, enhance transparency, and deliver comprehensive insights into supply chain operations.
  • Regulatory changes driving action–Anticipated regulatory changes, especially from bodies like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), push organizations to rethink and readjust their sustainability strategies. Companies are gearing up for new requirements, like calculating scope three emissions and preparing for third-party audits, signaling a shift towards more rigorous sustainability compliance.
  • Harmonization in reporting standards–Industry leaders are actively aligning various sustainability reporting standards, like the SBTI and CSRD, to simplify compliance processes. This harmonization effort targets making it easier for organizations, especially those with limited resources, to meet sustainability reporting requirements. This trend is driving a more unified and coherent approach to sustainability reporting.
  • Private equity’s growing influence–The influence of private equity in shaping sustainability practices is becoming increasingly apparent–initiatives like the ESG Data Convergence guide firms towards more standardized reporting and actionable sustainability measures. This trend reflects the growing role of private equity in promoting sustainable practices among portfolio companies.
  • Sustainability conversations in the boardroom–Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) topics are now taking center stage in corporate boardroom discussions. There is a heightened focus on genuine decarbonization efforts, avoiding greenwashing, and ensuring that concrete actions back public sustainability claims. This shift underscores the growing importance of sustainability in corporate governance and strategic decision-making.

It will be interesting to look back a year from now and see how this year’s predictions pan out. Many of these trends highlight a dynamic and evolving landscape in the sustainability sector for 2024, marked by increased accountability, technological advancement, regulatory alignment, and strategic corporate focus on genuine sustainability practices.

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Editorial statement
At Sustain.Life, our goal is to provide the most up-to-date, objective, and research-based information to help readers make informed decisions. Written by practitioners and experts, articles are grounded in research and experience-based practices. All information has been fact-checked and reviewed by our team of sustainability professionals to ensure content is accurate and aligns with current industry standards. Articles contain trusted third-party sources that are either directly linked to the text or listed at the bottom to take readers directly to the source.
Mitch Voss
Mitch Voss isa senior director of sustainability at Sustain.Life with 10+ years of experience in the sustainability space.
Sustain.Life Team
Sustain.Life’s teams of sustainability practitioners and experts often collaborate on articles, videos, and other content.
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