For true sustainability, your supply chain matters

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Annual sustainability reports may not encapsulate the entirety of an organisation's environmental impact.

Melissa Cantarow
Melissa Cantarow
30 August 20227 mins
Iron Mountain logo with blue mountains

However, annual sustainability reports may not encapsulate the entirety of an organization’s environmental impact. Regulating bodies around the world are increasingly pressuring and even mandating organizations to include their supply chain vendors in their environmental disclosures. 

Global climate consultancy experts at Carbon Trust estimate that up to 90% of an organization’s environmental impact falls within its supply chain. To back that up, research we conducted with Economist Impact indicates that more than 60% of organizations believe they need to improve visibility into their supply chains to foster overall business resilience.**

Think beyond your own carbon footprint

Measuring the impacts of an organization’s supply chain touchpoints means looking at scope 3 emissions. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines scope 3 emissions as “the result of activities from assets not owned or controlled by the reporting organization, but that the organization indirectly impacts in its value chain.” This includes everything from “upstream” activities, such as sourcing raw materials to produce goods, to “downstream” activities, such as transportation and distribution or disposition of expired IT assets.