Over the weekend, a sustainability-focused Wall Street Journal article started making the rounds on social media. In it, business columnist John D. Stoll notes that several top companies are starting to pump the brakes on their environmental, social and governance (ESG) programs due to economic strain amidst the coronavirus pandemic. And he poses the question: Will the pandemic, like economic crises before it, put sustainability on the back burner?
It's undeniably true that companies are cutting costs in the face of financial strain, and given that we're all on information overload, it's understandable to assume ESG cutbacks are happening across the board. But we at TriplePundit have a slightly different vantage point: Since we report on these topics daily, people love sharing their sustainability news with us — and, overall, the drumbeat of these announcements has remained relatively steady through the pandemic.
Right now we're all understandably consumed with the human suffering and economic strain posed by the pandemic. Business leaders are worried for their families, wondering how they'll maintain their payrolls, and grappling with how best to respond to this new global challenge we face. But we're not convinced we'll see a sunsetting of sustainability — and these eight examples are just some of the reasons why.
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