As companies fall under increased public pressure to examine the impacts they are having on the environment and on the communities in which they exist, sustainability is a concept being explored and embraced by a number of organizations. However, while the journey toward sustainability is gaining momentum there continues to be a need for a standardized method for defining and measuring progress toward this obscure and often illusive goal of sustainability.
As the definition and goal of a sustainable company expands beyond the historical and traditional meaning, a broader definition must be established and accepted regarding what constitutes a sustainable activity and a sustainable company or enterprise and, further, a means to easily report valuable, precise and comparable data is essential. For the purposes of this paper, sustainability is as defined by the Brundtland Commission as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.”
Rocky Mountain Institute has developed a tool that can be used by manufacturers, investors, regulators and communities alike to determine how a company is performing against the claim and pursuit of sustainability.