Virtual awards, real success

2nd October 2020


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Georgia R Elliott-Smith

The COVID-19 pandemic failed to prevent IEMA from celebrating the winners of its Sustainability Impact Awards 2020 last month.

A faultless ceremony took place online via a virtual event, clearly demonstrating our ability to adapt successfully to different realities in times of adversity.

In only its second year, the awards attracted an impressive range of shortlisted projects, organisations and individuals, including the world's first quantification of emissions for global healthcare systems. The achievements of businesses both big and small, and individuals with careers spanning five to 25 years, were on show during the hour-long ceremony. Judges had the unenviable task of singling out just 21 winners.

“All the winners can be proud of their achievements – action to tackle the climate and environmental crises we face requires business and industry, civil society and our politicians to step up and lead the transformation and change needed,“ said IEMA CEO Sarah Mukherjee. “IEMA's Sustainability Impact Awards 2020 provide a showcase for some of the best leadership and innovation from our members and the wider sustainability community.

“The winning entries highlight the vital role business and industry can and must play in transforming our world to a sustainable and green future – the leadership and inspiration provided by sustainability and environmental professionals is fundamental to that success.“

Winners were announced at high-tempo pace, with hundreds tuning in from across the world to see whether they were among the winning entries. Viridian Logic, which won the New Product, Service or Technology award, was unable to contain its excitement, tweeting “WE WON! WE WON! WE WON! WE WON!“

“It's innovation and outside-the-box thinking that we are celebrating, which is something that we in sustainability do incredibly well,“ Mukherjee said. “Thank you to the fantastic businesses up and down the country and around the world for your passion commitment and innovation.“

While this ceremony was not what we may have imagined eight months ago, the profession's ingenuity was clear, and attention now turns to next year's awards, where we hope to meet in better circumstances.

Click here to find a list of all this year's winners.

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