EMS-Emirates: ESG Talks | How the MENA is making sustainability a cornerstone of business success.
Updated: May 24
EMS-Emirates ESG Talks: Governments in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are offering incentives to encourage businesses to adopt sustainable practices and achieve their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals. For instance, the United Arab Emirates has provided priority parking, accessible and free power points, and free parking for electric vehicles, which indirectly promote the country's green initiatives. However, relying solely on governments and end consumers to drive green initiatives may not be enough. The private sector also needs to step up and take action.
To encourage businesses to adopt sustainable practices, MENA governments have introduced incentive schemes, such as tax cuts and preferred promotion, for companies that take the initiative to reduce their carbon footprint and build greener environments. Despite this, some businesses have been hesitant to adopt such initiatives due to concerns that they may negatively impact their financial performance. However, solutions to this enviro-economic paradox have been proposed by firms like EMS-Emirates. Such solutions address sustainability initiatives from an economic standpoint, enabling clients to achieve both their green goals and their bottom line objectives.
Read on to see the questions answered in EMS's latest interview on sustainability as a profitable practice.
What is ESG?
ESG stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance. It is a framework used by investors, companies, and other stakeholders to evaluate the sustainability and ethical impact of an investment or business.
Environmental factors refer to the impact of a company's activities on the natural environment, such as carbon emissions, waste management, and resource use. Social factors relate to the company's impact on people, including labor practices, human rights, community engagement, and product safety. Governance factors evaluate the company's management and control systems, including the composition and independence of its board of directors, executive compensation, and accounting practices.
ESG criteria are used to evaluate the performance of investments, assess risk, and identify potential opportunities for companies that prioritize sustainability and ethical practices. Many investors now incorporate ESG factors into their investment decision-making processes, and companies are increasingly being held accountable for their ESG performance by stakeholders including investors, customers, employees, and regulators.
Can sustainability be a profitable venture?
Yes, sustainability can be a profitable venture. In fact, many companies are finding that sustainable practices can help them reduce costs, increase efficiency, and boost their bottom line. Here are a few examples:
1. Energy efficiency: Companies can save money on energy costs by investing in energy-efficient technologies and practices, such as LED lighting, smart building systems, and renewable energy sources like solar panels.
2. Waste reduction: Companies can save money by reducing waste and improving their recycling efforts. By implementing waste reduction and recycling programs, companies can save on disposal costs and potentially earn revenue from selling recycled materials.
3. Sustainable supply chain: Companies can reduce risks and costs in their supply chain by adopting sustainable practices, such as working with suppliers that have strong environmental and social policies and sourcing materials locally.
4. Consumer demand: There is growing consumer demand for sustainable products and services, and companies that meet this demand can capture new markets and increase sales.
Overall, sustainability can help companies build a stronger brand, improve their reputation, and attract and retain employees and customers who value environmental and social responsibility. This can lead to increased profits and long-term business success.
Enviro-economical solutions with EMS-Emirates.
EMS-Emirates has always looked at sustainability from the economical angle, viewing the bottom line as the enabler to any change. EMS kicked off the 1st capital lease project in the Middle East associated to energy management and efficiency in the 1990's. While Capital lease on retrofits can be fruitful, it does not address the entirety of the enviro-economic paradox of sustainability. Capital lease still looks bad on the Profit and Loss and ultimately puts the client in debt throughout the pay-back-period.
One of EMS' latest solutions (EVA) incorporates a strategy that fosters cash from within the capital budget by using a consortium of sustainable technologies; enabling the client to fulfill it's sustainability goals without effecting their bottom line, putting them in debt, or losing ownership of their assets.
Where will sustainability be in 10 years?
Predicting the future of sustainability is difficult, but it's clear that sustainability will continue to be a critical issue in the next 10 years and beyond. Here are some possible scenarios for where sustainability may be in 10 years:
1. Increased focus on climate action: The climate crisis is one of the most urgent sustainability challenges we face, and in the next 10 years, we can expect to see increased focus on climate action. This may include stronger government policies, greater investment in renewable energy, and more companies committing to carbon neutrality.
2. Growth of circular economy: The circular economy is an economic model designed to minimize waste and maximize the use of resources. In the next 10 years, we may see a shift towards a more circular economy, with businesses adopting closed-loop systems, increasing recycling and reuse, and designing products for longevity and repairability.
3. Greater emphasis on social sustainability: While environmental sustainability is important, social sustainability is also a critical issue. In the next 10 years, we may see increased emphasis on social sustainability, including fair labor practices, human rights, and community engagement.
4. Advancements in technology: Technology has the potential to drive sustainability, and in the next 10 years, we may see new advancements that make sustainable practices more accessible and affordable. For example, we may see greater adoption of electric vehicles, more efficient renewable energy systems, and better waste management technologies.
Overall, sustainability will continue to be a critical issue in the next 10 years and beyond, and we can expect to see new developments and innovations that will help us address sustainability challenges more effectively.
* TechTalks are published bi-monthly to keep you up to date with MENA Sustainability, Green Buildings and their latest innovations. Moderated by Energy Consulting Department. Talk lead by Energy Independence Consultant- Omar K. Bushnaq Participants: Energy Management Services- EMS Consortium for innovative solutions, EEG Environmental Group, Others. Department: NET Zero & Energy Independence