All of this has many facets to it and can be argued one or the other however the key message here is the two groups, sometimes within the same company are not aligned as to a strategy on how to execute against sustainability goals When this alignment fails to occur you can almost be assured the goals themselves are in jeopardy.
Sustainability must be embedded in the 5 key areas of supply chain:
- Extraction / procurement
If the operators of each of these areas are just going about their business and expecting a message from "on high" to tell them what to do I believe they are mistaken. In each case, the operators must execute within the context of the overall sustainability goals of a company. This, of course, does not just mean carbon reduction but includes:
- Fair trade type practices (not allowing child labor, bad work conditions, conflict minerals etc.)
- Zero waste
- Replace (if you have to extract, how do you replace to make a greener environment)
- Reduction of all green house gases
- Design of product so the use of the product will be sustainable
- Renewable energy
- Re-usable packaging and product
Of course there are a lot more and I just wanted to show that this cannot be done waiting on an expert. Each and over operator must embed these ideas into their operation.