UK businesses are leading the way to sustainability, survey suggests

75% of UK businesses feel that they have a role to play in delivering the United Nations Sustainable Development goals (UNSDG’s), according to HSBC’s navigator report. 

HSBC conducted a survey on over 9,000 companies from across the world, including 1,000 UK based companies which found that three-quarters of British firms believe that they have a role to play in delivering the sustainable development goals (SDGs), with 28% believing that their role is significant.

In Spain, the Netherlands and France 58% of companies said they have a role to play, compared to 55% in Sweden and just 53% in Ireland.

However, while more UK businesses are committing to sustainability than any other European country, more than a quarter (28%) remain frustrated by the inconsistent sustainability measurements and reporting frameworks.

According to the survey, the main reasons why firms are choosing to become more sustainable is to improve operational efficiency (26%), meet regulatory standards (26%) and to gain a reputational advantage (24%).

The survey has also revealed that the most significant sources of pressure to become more sustainable comes from competitors (32%), the government (30%), regulators (30%) and employees (28%).

In order to deliver their sustainability goals in the future, 31% of businesses have identified investment in technology, innovation, and infrastructure as their top priorities, this was closely followed by plans to reduce their waste generation (29%), but the biggest challenge to adopting these sustainable practices is the cost involved in doing so.

Rob King, head of sustainable finance at HSBC said: ‘It’s encouraging to see that UK businesses are showing leadership to become more sustainable and make a long-term difference to their customers, employees and the local communities in which they operate.’

‘We are increasingly seeing businesses incorporate sustainability goals into their strategic objectives and business models as they strive to make a change in the future.’

‘Sustainable practices will have a positive impact on businesses.’

In related news, HSBC UK has launched three new green finance options to help British businesses become more sustainable and improve their green credentials.

Photo Credit – Pixabay

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