The race to net zero: How SMCC is empowering procurement

Carbon reduction platform 'SaveMoneyCutCarbon' (SMCC) offers comprehensive initiative to help procurement and business reduce their footprint as ESG grows

As the world grapples with the climate crisis, net-zero targets have become the holy grail for businesses across the globe. But new research by Accenture reveals that despite good intentions, 93% of companies committed to net-zero targets are at risk of failing to achieve their goals if they don't double their pace of emission reduction by 2030.

This means that while the intent is there, the practical steps to achieve it are lagging behind.

The problem is even more acute for small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), with a lack of knowledge on how to tackle emissions being prevalent.

NatWest's research shows that a staggering 87% of British SMEs are unaware of their carbon impact. It's a knowledge gap that needs to be addressed if we're going to achieve our climate targets.

Procurement leaders are creating some interesting and effective solutions to the problem, and are - as they should be - ever on the lookout for even more productive carbon-offsetting resources.

Mark Sait, CEO of SaveMoneyCutCarbon (SMCC), dives into the ESG issue that marks the zeitgeist.

“Environmental Social and Governance is a new buzzword, part of a new business language that is rapidly permeating the public sector and the board rooms up and down the country, often amplified by high profile statements around net zero targets – and there is no bigger purpose than doing your bit to save the planet,” he says.

The growing influence of ESGs has recalibrated the entire market so that now, investors have factored them into their evaluations.

Investors focusing on ESGs

“Investors in particular, are increasingly applying these non-financial factors as part of their analysis process to identify material risks and growth opportunities. 

“Consumers are demanding it and finance is becoming dependent on it and as a result change is happening, and from this, new exciting career opportunities are being created and organisations that are embracing ESG seem to be attracting and retaining the most driven staff,” says Sait.

But it doesn't stop there. Sait adds that this new landscape is creating a fast-track career opportunity for those that speak the language of ESG for the corporate world, and at the same time having a real impact. He says: “This is what I like to call, ‘doing well by doing good.”

Growing your ESG knowledge-base

These changes are not set to go away anytime soon, and procurement leaders, as well as businesses in general, are seeking to expand their ESG knowledge-base.

“For big change to happen,” Sait says, “I think in the next few years, having proper consultation on the best sustainable practices will prove to be make or break for businesses across the board. The incorporation of green behaviours into every business strategy won’t just benefit the bottom line but will add a competitive advantage to any business’s value.”

Combating greenwashing to achieve genuine sustainability

With the label of being ‘climate neutral’ becoming a key facet of marketing and increasingly crucial within the investor sphere, many companies are falling into the murky waters of ‘greenwashing.’

Some companies claim their products are ‘climate neutral’ or ‘made with recycled materials’ when those claims are not substantiated. Not only does this hinder the goal to reach net zero by 2050, but also does irreparable damage to their own value as a company.

“With new laws being drafted to stamp out greenwashing across the board,” says Sait, “businesses unsure about sustainable practices that add real change could be at risk of legal action if they continue to make claims that are unfounded.

Real, sustainable procurement practices

Having real advice from professionals in sustainable business practices not only helps companies increase their own value, but now will prove to be the norm when incorporating ESG strategies – and it doesn’t have to be expensive.

“SaveMoneyCutCarbon offers a free 30-minute carbon mentor phone call to businesses that are struggling with where to start their carbon neutral journey, and can help firms change their behaviours to lift their bottom line.”

With an ever-increasing number of organisations, including our own Government, signing up to net zero targets many as far out as 2050, ESG is a career path that is not going away any time soon, and Sait feels is, “something that should be promoted and featured across our schools, colleges, and universities to find the eco champions of tomorrow – as organisations will need these skills and, more importantly, so will the planet.”

SaveMoneyCutCarbon (SMCC), have launched an industry-first infrastructure designed to help SMEs and corporations alike analyse, report, and reduce their carbon footprint, empowering businesses with the tools they need to make tangible changes that will help them meet their net-zero targets.

This initiative from SMCC is both timely and relevant. With the clock ticking, the race to net zero is on. And while the challenge is great, the rewards are even greater. By taking action now, businesses can help build a sustainable future for us all.

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