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ENVIRO RX, OCTOBER 2018

In the mid-to-late 1990s, corporate sustainability was still viewed as an add-on. Stakeholder concerns, resource pressures and societal damage were failing to influence business. Most companies continued to focus purely on economic gains. The 1997 Kyoto Protocol pushed climate action into the policy sphere and politicians began to push more demands onto the private sector. Slowly but surely, corporate social responsibility (CSR) was finally extending beyond simply environmental policy. While the heated plastics debate has pushed sustainability into mainstream news outlets, companies are still largely reactive with their responses. As investors call for more climate-related disclosures and consumers increasingly demand better transparency, businesses can no longer stand idly by until a problem emerges. Businesses are now being examined from all angles. When looked at in the context of where we need to be, the next 20 years will be even more crucial than the last.

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