Supply chain is weak link in sustainability

11th February 2013


Supplychain

Related Topics

Related tags

  • Business & Industry ,
  • Supply chain ,
  • Retail and wholesale ,
  • Procurement ,
  • Manufacturing

Author

IEMA

Suppliers' efforts to cut carbon emissions and prepare for the impacts of climate change continue to lag behind those of their multinational customers, according to the latest report from the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)

The annual supply chain survey of CDP member companies, which include Jaguar Land Rover, Coca Cola and Unilever, reveals that less than 40% of the 2,363 suppliers polled have carbon reduction targets in place, compared with 92% of their client companies.

Just 27% of suppliers are investing in carbon-cutting measures, whereas 69% of clients do so.

And, despite 70% of companies agreeing that droughts and floods are already affecting their business, or will do so in future, just 45% of suppliers say they identify the physical risks posed by a changing climate to their enterprise. The equivalent figure for CDP members is 90%.

“This research illuminates fragility in the global supply chain model,” said CDP chief executive Paul Simpson. “The marked difference in the sustainable actions of companies and their suppliers highlights a missed opportunity for suppliers to reduce energy costs and risks.”

The findings of the report confirm that CDP members are increasingly benefiting from investing in measures to tackle their carbon footprint.

Almost two-thirds (63%) confirm that they reduced their emissions in 2012, compared with 43% in 2011, while 73% also report associated cost savings – up from 39% in 2011. By contrast, just 29% of suppliers report financial savings as a result of cutting their emissions.

The 2012 supply chain survey results also show that multinationals foresee interruptions to production as the most likely impact of a changing climate, followed by rising operational costs.

When asked how they rank risks posed by climate change, supply chain disruption was rated as high by 55% of firms, outstripping concerns about regulatory risk and access to energy and water.

When asked specifically about water, more than half of CDP’s members said they ranked it as a high or medium risk, but just 6% felt their suppliers were fully engaged with water risks.

Subscribe

Subscribe to IEMA's newsletters to receive timely articles, expert opinions, event announcements, and much more, directly in your inbox.


Transform articles

Four in five shoppers willing to pay ‘sustainability premium’

Despite cost-of-living concerns, four-fifths of shoppers are willing to pay more for sustainably produced or sourced goods, a global survey has found.

16th May 2024

Read more

One in five UK food businesses are not prepared for EU Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) coming into force in December, a new survey has uncovered.

16th May 2024

Read more

Each person in the UK throws a shocking 35 items of unwanted clothes and textiles into general waste every year on average, according to a new report from WRAP.

2nd May 2024

Read more

The largest-ever research initiative of its kind has been launched this week to establish a benchmark for the private sector’s contribution to the UK’s 2050 net-zero target.

2nd May 2024

Read more

Weather-related damage to homes and businesses saw insurance claims hit a record high in the UK last year following a succession of storms.

18th April 2024

Read more

The Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) has issued a statement clarifying that no changes have been made to its stance on offsetting scope 3 emissions following a backlash.

16th April 2024

Read more

One of the world’s most influential management thinkers, Andrew Winston sees many reasons for hope as pessimism looms large in sustainability. Huw Morris reports

4th April 2024

Read more

Vanessa Champion reveals how biophilic design can help you meet your environmental, social and governance goals

4th April 2024

Read more

Media enquires

Looking for an expert to speak at an event or comment on an item in the news?

Find an expert

IEMA Cookie Notice

Clicking the ‘Accept all’ button means you are accepting analytics and third-party cookies. Our website uses necessary cookies which are required in order to make our website work. In addition to these, we use analytics and third-party cookies to optimise site functionality and give you the best possible experience. To control which cookies are set, click ‘Settings’. To learn more about cookies, how we use them on our website and how to change your cookie settings please view our cookie policy.

Manage cookie settings

Our use of cookies

You can learn more detailed information in our cookie policy.

Some cookies are essential, but non-essential cookies help us to improve the experience on our site by providing insights into how the site is being used. To maintain privacy management, this relies on cookie identifiers. Resetting or deleting your browser cookies will reset these preferences.

Essential cookies

These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to log into secure areas of our website.

Analytics cookies

These cookies allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors to our website and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works.

Advertising cookies

These cookies allow us to tailor advertising to you based on your interests. If you do not accept these cookies, you will still see adverts, but these will be more generic.

Save and close