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Towards Zero Impact Growth: Strategies of leading companies in 10 industries

Consultancy Deloitte teamed up with sustainability visionary John Elkington to help make Elkington’s vision of a zero-impact growth economy more accessible to major corporations. The team developed a scoring system to plot companies along Elkington’s “pathway to zero,” the five stages from recognizing the opportunity of a zero-impact growth strategy to fully embracing one. Of 65 companies studied, none had yet reached the final stage but according to the analysis, six companies — Puma, Natura, Nestlé, Nike, and Ricoh and Unilever — have arrived at the fourth stage. Among a range of findings, the study identified several best practices including taking a holistic approach to sustainability, exemplified by Unilever and its Sustainable Living Plan; acting collaboratively, exemplified by a group of competing apparel manufacturers that have jointly committed to eliminating the discharge of hazardous chemicals (and, I would add, the work of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition); and internalizing externalities, exemplified by Puma, which released the first environmental profit and loss statement. For more information visit the Zero-Impact Growth Monitor site.

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