Sustainability

150 articles

Why We’re Hunting for Treasure – in Old Landfill Sites

Landfills, quite literally, are untapped gold mines.

Humans are generally getting better at dealing with their mess. In the United Kingdom, for instance, 45 percent of household waste is now recycled – yet that still means more than 12 million tons are buried in the ground every year. Burying that rubbish isn’t cheap, and neither is keeping it in the ground once it’s there. […]

4 Cities Using Transportation Data to Be Sustainable and Inclusive

Numbers don't lie – cities can tap into data to make transportation networks more responsive to residents' needs.

Cities across the world have pledged to take action on climate change, including planning for more sustainable forms of transportation. But many cities, as we’ve previously noted, lack the data and information necessary to track and monitor their progress. This data provides valuable examples of transportation patterns and needs, allowing cities to plan mitigation actions […]

3 Steps to Create Your Company’s Renewable Energy Strategy

Want your business to tap into renewable energy? Here's a good place to start.

At the Global Climate Action Summit this fall, stakeholders from around the globe will meet in San Francisco to discuss how we can take climate ambition to the next level. Business can play a significant leadership role in accelerating the transition to a lower-carbon economy, and as we have seen through initiatives like the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance (REBA), […]

Before We Reinvent the Economy, We Must Reinvent Ourselves

A sustainable economy won’t mean much if we are still mired in unhappiness and alienation.

The bioeconomy – a sustainable economic system based on clean energy and natural products – aims to eliminate our dependence on finite fossil resources and enable equitable use of renewable biological resources and ecosystems. The bioeconomy will use frugal innovation to reinvent agricultural and industrial systems, so we can produce healthier food, drugs and other products for more people […]

Real Progress in Real-World Conditions

How a culture of collaboration and volunteerism is driving a new – and more effective – approach to sustainability.

For nearly two years, UPS and the drone maker, Zipline, have collaborated on roughly 150 deliveries per day of life-saving blood to 21 transfusing facilities located in the western half of Rwanda. More recently, the campaign has expanded to deliver basic medications, vaccines and medical supplies to all 12 million people across Rwanda. To launch […]

The Future of LGBTQ Inclusion

With our allies, we’ll go far in ensuring equality for all.

Looking back over the past two decades, America’s workplaces have become decidedly more inclusive of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) employees. The demand for an engaged, productive and talented workforce requires that companies attract and retain workers across the broad spectrum of diversity. Today, a company cannot afford to leave a talented worker […]

Here Are 6 Big Ideas to Help the Environment

From infrastructure investments to transparent supply chains, these innovations on the horizon could benefit us all.

Sometimes the news about our environment can feel a little monotonous. We read the same old headlines about how important the environment is, how the situation is getting worse and how we (whoever that is) need to do something about it. In that spirit, here are six big ideas that could create a more sustainable […]

Making the Luxury Experience Sustainable

For Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, high-end products need not come with a high carbon count.

The issues of urban access, congestion and pollution affect us all – even retail luxury brands. Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH), for example, is changing its business model to meet two of the 21st century’s greatest challenges: e-commerce and urbanization. Christian Galichon, LVMH Sourcing’s director of purchasing coordination, thinks about these logistics conundrums every day. […]

Lessons Learned on the Path to Sustainable Urban Logistics

Major European cities have become a testing ground for the next phase of city delivery.

UPS Chief Information and Engineering Officer Juan Perez talked Monday about the future of our network – how we are integrating technology to connect the facilities, fleet, drivers and information systems fueling a more sustainable global network. From disrupting our industry – and ourselves – with our new technologies to overhauling our approach to city […]

The Next-Generation Logistics Network

Take a closer look at how UPS is bringing the global smart logistics network to life.

In 2017, UPS aligned its technology and engineering functions into one organization and named Juan Perez its Chief Information and Engineering Officer. Perez leads a team of UPS engineers and IT professionals who are laser-focused on building the company’s smart logistics network of the future. Read his thoughts below on how innovation and sustainability became […]

Can We Unlock the Power of the Innovation System for Good?

How innovators, investors, managers and policymakers can come together to make change.

Can business save the Earth? The answer depends on a broad system of forces – forces that generate new inventions, successfully commercialize new products out of these inventions, provide capital to support commercialization and scaling and provide value to a wide number of customers. Each of these forces is driven by the idiosyncratic ingenuity and […]

Rebuilding Cities, Sustainably

Now is the time to commit to sustainable-design practices that will rebuild the world’s infrastructure with climate resilience at the forefront.

Natural disasters are a part of human existence — ever since the inhabitants of Pompeii were victims of Vesuvius, Homo sapiens have been dying unnecessarily due to the extremes of Mother Nature. Yet today, extreme weather events are even more calamitous, increasing in both frequency and cost. In 2017 alone, the United States experienced 15 natural disasters that each […]

How to Achieve Zero Waste

Here are three cities that adhere to today’s demanding environmental policy.

Recycling initiatives are nothing new, but companies that depend on efficient hazardous waste management should be keen to the infrastructure that is operating right now and dedicated to those who need to know how to achieve zero waste. At Veolia, this applies to numerous spaces: household materials, the automotive industry, and electronics that don’t have […]

Local Business Innovation Equips Off-Grid Households with Electricity

Developing nations need solutions that provide a bridge toward tomorrow’s opportunities.

If the old adage is true and necessity is the mother of invention, then ingenuity must surely be the father. Globally, 1.2 billion people live without access to electricity. Within this decade, the global off-grid solar energy market has grown complex and dynamic. [Photo: Power Africa/USAID] Initially, it was marked by low levels of activity […]

How The Humble Bicycle Can Save Our Cities

Here's a blueprint for how cities can welcome the bicycle – and all the positive outcomes that a bike-centric city brings.

Mikael Colville-Andersen rides his bike everywhere in Copenhagen, but he would never introduce himself as a cyclist. “I’m just one of the 400,000 people riding a bike in this city because it makes our daily lives more effective,” he says. The founder of Copenhagenize, a design studio that specializes in bike infrastructure, as well as several […]

The Hidden Benefits of a Sustainable Mindset

With Earth Day approaching, let’s examine the link between a culture of sustainability and one of innovation.

In some respects, it’s great news that more than half of the global population now lives in cities – a figure expected to increase to two in three people around the world by 2050. This growth makes cities a great place to live and work and gives them a real sense of energy and vitality. […]

To Go Circular, First Go Vertical

The vertical integration of your supply chain provides both economic and environmental benefits.

Early last year, the waste management world was abuzz with news of furniture manufacturing giant Ikea’s minority stake in the Dutch plastics recycling company, Morssinkhof Rymoplast Group. Part of the $1 billion Ikea earmarked for sourcing sustainable materials, this was a step toward achieving the company’s goal of making its plastic products from 100 percent recycled […]

Managing Supply Chain Water Risk

The challenges of water scarcity will require businesses to expand their supply chain sustainability efforts.

In 2016, the information and communications technology (ICT) industry came under fire when environmental inspections found that 18 centralized water treatment plants in Shanghai had issues with heavy metals exceeding legal limits. As a result, the two large-scale electronics plants responsible for releasing these pollutants are now in the process of being forced to stop operations. […]

7 Things Every Company Should Know about AI and Sustainable Business

From human rights to environmental issues, we have much to lose if AI does not evolve in ways that support the public good.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is advancing rapidly, thanks to ever-more-powerful computing, massive growth in the availability of digital data and increasingly sophisticated algorithms. The world’s largest technology firms are investing billions to develop their AI capabilities, and companies across industries, from travel to real estate to fashion, are racing to bring AI-enabled services to market. AI […]

Advice for Breaking Down Sustainability Silos in 2018

The barriers between corporate functional silos are already crumbling.

As I reflect on 2017, one of the positive changes I noticed was the breaking down of silos. As the walls between sustainability, corporate social responsibility and other corporate functions start to crumble, leaders are better able to extend their influence and catalyze the integration of sustainable business practices across their company. As Charlene Lake, chief sustainability […]

Our Top 5 Sustainability Articles of 2017

A year-end look at the best sustainability content from Longitudes.

There are no longer separate paths for business and sustainability success – those two lanes are now one and the same. But even as the corporate community reaches a consensus on the importance of sustainable practices, many questions remain about how best to balance environmental, efficiency and commercial concerns. These questions take on an even greater […]

The Vital Role of Business in Global Development

Removing all barriers to mutually beneficial partnerships is smart business and good for our communities.

The challenges for businesses looking to invest in emerging economies are the same challenges for communities themselves: good governance and transparency, a strong, business-enabling environment, market accessibility and, of course, peace and stability. As a global development organization, Global Communities is committed to creating these conditions. And one of the most important ways to do […]

What Sensors Mean for Business, the Planet and Your Lungs

Business partnerships, when combined with scientific expertise, can turn raw data into action.

A recent study from UPS and GreenBiz revealed that 95 percent of surveyed companies recognize the effect that urbanization – particularly air quality and traffic congestion – will have on business growth and sustainability. Why? Because poor air quality costs the global economy $225 billion every year in lost labor income, according to the World […]

Protecting Our Food Supply

Let's dispel three myths about the food supply chain.

Today approximately 54 percent of the global population lives in an urban area, and the United Nations expects that by 2050, urban dwellers will make up two-thirds of the population. With the global rise of urbanization, we are becoming increasingly disconnected from our food sources. We know that in the United States, for example, food […]

Breakthrough Approaches for Sustainable Cities

The long-term health of cities matters – we must work together for a lasting future for our urban centers.

More and more of the world’s population is moving to cities. According to the UN, by 2050 nearly two-thirds of the global population will live in cities, and urban populations will increase by 2 billion people. While this mass migration will bring new, exciting opportunities for city residents, it also brings daunting challenges to urban […]

Sustainability on the Move: Transportation Innovation

Advancements in sustainability require advancements in how we move people and products.

In a recent blog post, I described how the design phase often determines the biggest sustainability impacts of infrastructure projects. With transportation infrastructure in particular — whether for air, rail, road or sea — about to be radically transformed through technological advances, I foresee tremendous opportunity for sustainability. If you think about it, the basic […]

Resiliency is Preparedness

Collaboration between cities and the private sector can prepare us for physical, social and economic challenges.

Cities across the globe are already experiencing a great deal of change – and stress – associated with the rise of urbanization. In fact, according to the World Health Organization, urban residents accounted for 54 percent of the total global population in 2015, and that number is expected to grow to 60 percent by 2030. […]

2 New Rules of the Sustainability Game

Here's how supply and demand are two sides of the same coin.

Last month, BSR brought together a group of luxury brands at Paris’ Salon du Luxe conference to talk about the new rules of the game when it comes to desirability, sustainability and luxury. In the past several years, the growth of the luxury industry has slowed, and aspirational brands such as Michael Kors and the […]

Circular Thought and Growth

A Q&A on the power of the circular economy.

We talked recently about the UPS-Optoro campaign to enable sustainable e-commerce. But you can’t have a forward-looking conversation about sustainability without discussing the circular economy. By circular economy, we mean an economic model based on a “continuous positive development cycle that preserves and enhances natural capital, optimizes resource yields and minimizes system risks by managing […]

Sustainable E-Commerce

Against the backdrop of growing consumer demand, two logistics leaders discuss their sustainability pursuits.

Known as the Motor City, you might not associate Detroit with sustainability. But in recent weeks, Ed Rogers, Senior Director of Global Sustainability at UPS, and Larisa Summers, Senior Vice President of e-Commerce and Marketing at Optoro, presented at the Sustainable Brands conference, right in the heart of the city synonymous with the automobile. With the […]