Ikea is leading the way in corporate sustainability with their new goal to become a net exporter of energy by 2020. Days ago, the international furniture giant announced that by building on existing wind and solar infrastructure (much of which already runs a significant amount of their facilities) the company will begin to sell back surplus energy in an attempt to improve its overall sustainability.
Ikea operates globally and, as is the case for many businesses, necessarily does so with a significant cost to the environment. Manufacturing, transportation, logistics and IT Asset management are some of the more consuming activities that can cause a great deal of energy and resource consumption. By offsetting this cost through ways of sustainable energy production, Ikea is proposing a new way for large corporations to move forward.
Such a commitment is both radical and revolutionary in the world of corporate sustainability. We have seen other businesses rise to the challenge of addressing their significant environmental costs yet none has proposed an actual energy surplus. Globalization and global capitalism has given corporations to expand to mind boggling sizes with net profits that exceed the GDP of many countries. Global companies can have hundreds of thousands of employees and have products and services around the entire globe. Yet so often the environmental impact of these entities is put by the wayside and not subject to the scrutiny of the millions of lives it can affect.
Ikea is taking a big stride in the business community and we can only hope that they are the first of many businesses to come after them. We are proud to work alongside IKEA in recycling and adding to the sustainable ecosystem that is their business.