Sustainability has become a buzz word recently. People use it, debate it, criticize it all day covering topics such as climate change, wage slavery and Greta Thunberg. But what is this term ‘sustainability’ about? Well, scholars still struggle to come up with a holistic definition. Nevertheless, they all agree on one thing: Sustainability is up there with the most urgent matters of today’s world and we all are in charge of it.
Sustainability can be viewed as a fundamental set of principles. It originates in the realization that all action we take has an impact on our environment, society as well as on our common future. This leaves both companies and individuals with a responsibility on one hand, but on the other hand also the opportunity to dedicate all action to the goal of shaping and maintaining both a present and a future that it is worth living in. It is all about today, tomorrow and even the next decades.
Nothing but big words? All about the karma? A common misconception. In fact, these principles mentioned in the section above convert into actions and hands-on measures. Companies can develop products with higher life time within more eco-efficient manufacturing processes. They can account for higher employee satisfaction by ensuring their health and by paying fair salaries. Companies can make sure to play fair in their markets by standing strong versus corruption and anti-trust. They can help to enforce social justice and equality by supporting or launching regional and global initiatives. Being sustainable also means a strong economic performance in the long term. Only a company that is economically stable can provide jobs, pay fair salaries, support communities and drive innovation. It is so much more than just fancy words and pretentious good karma initiatives.
At PALFINGER we include significant topics into four sustainability fields:
Responsible Employer, Eco-efficiency in production, Sustainable Products and Fair Business. Just follow the links to find out what these fields consist of. For even more in-depth information you might also want to check out the Integrated Annual Report 2018 including sustainability at PALFINGER.
Writing this post, an important statement was made: We all are in charge of sustainability. We, the people, also have the power to convert sustainability into action. Nobody can “save the world” on his own, obviously. But nobody is expected to do so anyway. Each and every one can contribute in their own way and it is surprisingly easy. Next time you enter a super market you might want to take a look where your fruits and vegetables come from – or what is in season around your region. Why would you buy vegetables that have travelled miles and miles around the globe instead of deciding for food that has been grown just around the corner and tastes so much better anyway? On top of that, buying local ingredients is also an investment in your local economy. Simple things such as rethinking your groceries are how it all begins.
This also leads to a glance into the future: Soon you will discover a series of blog posts striving to answer the question of “How can I contribute?”. Stay tuned and you will most certainly find at least some easy and exciting new ideas which are worth trying. Because overall, sustainability is a hands on task for all of us.
We drive positive impAct!
Together we are shaping the future – PALFINGER