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Integrating Technology into Sustainable Development

By 
Keslio Team
6
 minute read  
|  
March 19, 2024
A cubist office desk with a desktop that has plants sprouting out of its screen.

Embracing sustainability is a step towards future-proofing a business. Yet finding the right starting point can prolong planning phases at a time where actions towards sustainable development should be in progress. With all the concepts and elements incorporated into overall sustainability, involved teams will need the support of extra arms.

Through integrating technology into sustainable development, a business can simplify operations, better understand the sustainability landscape, and make better and data-driven decisions and strategies. The future thrives when people are able to use technological advancements and innovations to steer environmental and social progress.

The future is not so far from today. Global changes in sustainability have steered innovation. It is best to start incorporating technology into business practices to ensure a successful and sustainable tomorrow.

Using Technology for Sustainability

Technology can ease a company’s transition towards sustainable practices. The emergence of new technologies and software has opened companies to a route where they don’t have to start from nowhere. Technology can be used across many aspects of sustainability. Here are a few rising trends in sustainability technology and services essential to every business.

Climate Tech and Decarbonization

Climate tech consists of technology and services catered to decarbonization. This encompasses a wide range of services dedicated to mitigating the impacts of climate change and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Different industries have different approaches towards decarbonization. Businesses may invest in renewable energy sources to reduce their carbon footprint in their offices and facilities. A transportation and logistics company may shift to electric vehicles. An architectural firm may steer their new designs towards energy efficient infrastructure and may work with construction companies and suppliers that work with more sustainable materials and appliances. Climate tech is applicable across value chains and can be present in every industry, gearing global economies towards more sustainable and carbon neutral practices.

Climate tech also includes software supporting businesses in their initiatives towards decarbonization. With reporting requirements beginning to include thorough details on Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions, a business can utilize climate tech and decarbonization management softwares to help track the vast scope of emissions. Through utilizing climate technology, a company easily can move further down their road to net zero.

Data Management

Sustainability encompasses numerous aspects in a business, ranging from transportation and logistics to employee and client satisfaction. Given the complex, interconnected, and broad scope of sustainability and ESG, understanding sustainability performance would require both a bird’s eye view and a thorough breakdown of numbers and data.

Managing, collecting, and processing data can be time-consuming and exhausting. To gather data across multiple levels, functions, and stakeholders is a greater challenge. Yet through technology, this process becomes easier.

An effective data management system is needed to support sustainability efforts in a business. These can monitor environmental impacts and sustainability performance. Businesses can also utilize these software to track employee engagement, health, and safety. These also could be a collaborative workspace for stakeholders to better understand their impact. Through data software, a business is able to save time in collecting, analyzing, and interpreting vast amounts of environmental, social, and governance data, enabling them to make the right choices aligned with their sustainability goals, targeting areas that would make the strongest positive impact and reducing the risk of negative impacts on the environment, society, and the business itself.

Governance

Observing ESG policies and creating sustainability reports can be difficult with its details and requirements. Yet with the support of technology, ESG governance becomes more effortless for companies to practice.

Tied with ESG data management systems, ESG governance and compliance services are emerging, responding to the challenges organizations face. Data management systems are beginning to incorporate ESG policies and sustainability frameworks into their services. Through this, businesses can simply feed their data into the system and in return, receive information, charts, and graphs aligned to a specific sustainability reporting framework or standard. Other programs are also capable of generating reports ready for auditing. In addition, to ensure the accuracy of reporting, data verification and third party assurance has been integrated into programs, strengthening a company’s reporting strategies and trust among stakeholders.

Technology can also further streamline risk management by analyzing data and identifying patterns and potential threats, allowing organizations to have more insight on what issues to tackle and prevent.

ESG governance is more proactive when tech takes over certain tasks. Utilizing this to automate processes like transforming rows of data into charts and graphs helps organizations save time and effort and allows them to focus more on implementing strategies and tackling sustainability issues that impact them and their stakeholders. Enhanced ESG reporting and compliance helps organizations fulfill regulatory requirements and showcase their commitment to sustainable development.

Circularity and Supply Chains

Innovations in sustainability extend beyond information and metrics and stretch across the value chain. Embracing circularity and sustainable supply chains is an emerging trend businesses can follow to future-proof their operations.

Technology drives progress in circularity and supply chain management, optimizing processes to make things more efficient and effective. In a sustainability standpoint, technological advancements can also support businesses towards a zero-waste economy. Minimizing waste through reusing and recycling can be supported by new technology. For example, waste management facilities can make use of scanners that help sort and separate different types of waste. In addition, technology can empower consumers to participate in circularity initiatives through digital platforms that provide resources and information on nearby recycling facilities, transforming sustainability into a collaborative effort across all stakeholders.

Sustainable sourcing has also been supported by technological advancements. Tied with data management and compliance, organizations can enhance supply chain visibility. New platforms have allowed businesses to practice sustainability due diligence and responsible sourcing, through gathering data from suppliers to utilize in risk assessments generated by the platform. As the supply chain visibility software processes and reports the data, the two parties can further strengthen their connection by collaborating to create new changes aligned with ESG policies and their sustainability goals.

The Future of Sustainability

When you think of the future, you think of technological advancements and progress. Rethinking the future, however, entails a sustainable and continuously improving way of doing things. As companies continue to adapt in response to global changes, there is an extensive potential to innovate and shape business practices for sustainability. Through changing the way we work, we can better ensure a sustainable world for future generations.

Combining technology and sustainability together can further advance progress as it eases data collection and management, keeps track and forecasts performance, streamlines systems and processes, and helps businesses better understand the complex and changing world of sustainability reporting and governance. By integrating technology into business practices, sustainability no longer becomes an unfamiliar landscape, but a practice infused in everyday life.

At Keslio, we are deeply passionate about sustainability, equipping us with the expertise and extensive network needed to guide clients through their sustainability journey effectively and efficiently. Our expertise is particularly valuable for companies looking to embed sustainability practices into their businesses and investors looking to integrate ESG and impact into investment portfolios. To learn more about how Keslio can assist your organization on its sustainability journey, please don't hesitate to get in touch with us.

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