ESG Goals Remain Firm Despite Economic Slump - Honeywell
Honeywell International Inc.
Honeywell, a global leader in energy and climate transition solutions, released its 1Q 2023 Environmental Sustainability Index. This index is updated quarterly and shows the most important trends in global efforts to stop climate change and improve sustainability.
The global study, which polled more than 750 business leaders involved in sustainability, found that nearly 98% of organisations have been somewhat or very successful in reaching at least one or more sustainability goals in the past 12 months.
There is a growing positive outlook regarding meeting sustainability goals by 2030, which is a significant deadline year for many commitments related to energy efficiency, reducing emissions, preventing pollution, and promoting circularity and recycling.
"Despite tough macroeconomic conditions, organisations are still committed to fighting climate change and meeting their sustainability goals," said Darius Adamczyk, chairman and CEO of Honeywell. "While data shows an increased sense of optimism toward goal achievement, we know decision-makers are still perplexed about what their respective journeys and roadmaps look like toward their targets. With over 60% of our annual revenue derived from ESG-oriented solutions and approximately 60% of our R&D spend devoted to ESG-oriented innovation1, we have the deep experience and expertise to assist organisations all over the world in meeting their sustainability targets, even in more difficult economic conditions."
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Some of the key highlights of the report include the following:
Sustainability goals continue to be perceived as the top corporate priority, cited by 71% of organisations as one of their top five priorities (highest percentage). North American organisations appear to trail most other regions in establishing long-term sustainability goals. Organisations in Asia Pacific prioritise sustainability goals more than any other region.
Most organisations are prioritising energy efficiency and evolution across geographies, but other categories, such as emissions reduction and circularity/recycling showed increased momentum. In fact, 50% of organisations plan to increase budgets related to emissions reduction by over 20% over the coming 12 months.
Companies are shifting from primarily process-driven methods for achieving goals to more balanced approaches that combine both technology- and process-driven initiatives. While most organisations focus on process change to achieve near-term goals, over 20% of organisations use a balanced blend of process and technology, with the other 15% leaning heavily on technology to achieve goals.
The current state of the economy and international politics makes it harder for organisations to reach their sustainability goals. While pandemic-related concerns were cited as the top barrier to success in the previous report, economic concerns and their impact are now cited as the top anticipated barrier over the coming 12 months.
Daniel Newman, principal analyst and founding partner of Futurum Research, said, "The second release of Honeywell's Environmental Sustainability Index gave us some new data that showed some interesting positive shifts in how people feel about sustainability efforts across sectors. As the macroeconomic environment continues to put pressure on companies to be more efficient, the commitment to sustainability indicates both the importance of meeting sustainability goals and the potential economic value that purposeful investment in sustainability may deliver for companies that prioritise sustainability."
Evan van Hook, Honeywell's chief sustainability officer, said, "It makes me happy to hear that more and more companies are using technology integrations to reach their goals. No matter where a company is in its journey toward sustainability, adding technology initiatives to its sustainability strategy will speed up its progress."