Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Implementation of General Sustainability Objectives as Tools to Improve the Environmental Performance of Industry

Version 1 : Received: 17 May 2021 / Approved: 19 May 2021 / Online: 19 May 2021 (07:36:12 CEST)

How to cite: Almgren, R.; Hjelm, O. Implementation of General Sustainability Objectives as Tools to Improve the Environmental Performance of Industry. Preprints 2021, 2021050428 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202105.0428.v1). Almgren, R.; Hjelm, O. Implementation of General Sustainability Objectives as Tools to Improve the Environmental Performance of Industry. Preprints 2021, 2021050428 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202105.0428.v1).

Abstract

Abstract This article examines the implementation of the Swedish national environmental quality objectives and discusses what can be learnt for the equivalent process for the set of global UN 2030 goals (SDGs), established in 2015. The empirical basis is a study on 50 large companies in Sweden and their use of these objectives in their policy formulation. The SDGs are crafted with a broader approach than the Swedish national environmental quality objectives. Therefore, the SDGs probably better reflect the agenda of the business community since they have a global character, cover the whole spectrum of important sustainability issues and provide a mutual agenda for the business community world-wide. More than 90 percent of the large companies in the study have explicitly committed themselves to the SDGs, only 1-2 years after they were published, whereas similar commitments hardly exist for the national environmental quality objectives, even 20 years after its establishment. A large majority of the large companies in this study know about the SDGs, have actively endorsed them, and started to adjust their activities accordingly. At the end, the results of these endorsements remain to be seen.

Subject Areas

Agenda 2030; sustainability goals; national environmental quality objectives; industry; integration; implementation

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