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UK firms better placed to deal with sustainability issues

UK businesses are more focused on sustainability than companies in other countries and this gives them a valuable advantage as responsibility and sustainability become focal points in business development, according to new research from the Carbon Trust.

A survey of 475 senior executives in the UK, USA, Brazil, Korea and China reveals that the majority of firms believe they will not need to develop a business strategy to address the problem of resource shortages until 2018. Moreover, most businesses estimate that they are likely to start investing in sustainability action within the next 10 to 15 years at the earliest, suggesting that they may not be implementing such strategies until 2025, the Herald Online reports.

Businesses in the UK are more likely to be spending money on sustainability, and on the whole British companies are more advanced in terms of reporting practices and setting targets than any of the other countries surveyed. This makes UK businesses better placed to deal with the increasing demand for sustainability reporting than those in the rest of the world.

In fact, the survey reveals that just 13% of the British companies researched currently have no sustainability programme in place, compared to a global average of 52% of businesses that have not even set goals for their reduction of waste and carbon emissions.

According to Tom Delay, chief executive of the Carbon Trust, many firms fail to see the benefits of addressing sustainability and resource issues and consider dealing with them to be an obligation and additional cost. However, successful resource management can lead to successful business and more market opportunities, he claims.

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