SDGs Industry Guide: Opportunities and Best Practices Seminar Outcome Report (2/27)
Global Compact Network Korea (GCNK) published the SDGs Industry Guide: Opportunities and Best Practices <Energy, Natural Resources & Chemicals> and held a seminar inviting business officials from the relevant sectors of the industry on Wednesday, 27th of February. The seminar was organized to introduce the ‘Global Initiative Platform and Best practices’ and implementation guide for the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The seminar, which was held for the fourth time as a series after <Food, Beverage and Consumer goods>, <Industrial Manufacturing> and <Healthcare & Life Sciences> seminar last year, was attended by participants from Korea Gas Safety Corporation, Korea National Oil Corporation, Korea Gas Technology Corporation, Lotte Chemical, Korea Chemical Industry Council, etc.
Prior to the seminar, Amb. Suk-Bum Park, Secretary-General of the GCNK mentioned, “The role of companies in achieving the SDGs is greater than that of the government in the 21st century, and the achievement of SDGs is clearly related to the achievements of companies. I hope this seminar will be an opportunity for companies to share their best practices and knowledge successfully, along with this publication which contains examples of best practices by leading competitors and partners in the energy, natural resources, and chemical industry.”
Subsequently, Researcher of the GCNK, Ms. Seo Young Lee introduced the UN Global Compact and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and shared the core contents of the newly published SDGs industry-specific implementation guide <Energy, Natural Resources and Chemicals>. Ms. Lee explained business opportunities provided by the SDGs surrounding the industry by implementing Sustainable Energy for All, Zero-Carbon Energy, and Sustainable Production and Consumption, and introduced various global initiatives and partnership platforms, including the ‘EITI (Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative)’. In addition, Ms. Lee said that many leading companies recognize SDGs as a source of innovative solutions to solve global problems, which leads to developing sustainable business models. She finished her presentation by sharing exemplary SDGs practices of global companies such as Amec Foster Wheeler, Escom, AkzoNobel, and BP.
Lastly, participants had time to share and discuss their SDGs/CSR related activities and concerns. The GCNK Chief/Senior Researcher, Ms. Lee Eunkyung claimed, "SDGs may be unfamiliar to some corporate representatives, but they are on the verge of environmental issues discussed in the chemical and energy industries. There are many companies that are already leading the SDGs in this industry, and it is important to integrate major issues such as smart grid, waste minimization, disputed minerals into corporate strategy and KPI. Public corporations should also consider internalization beyond social value promotion as social value performance evaluation.”
At this seminar, active discussions were made regarding how to effectively report and communicate the achievements of the SDGs and human rights management in the private sector. In particular, participants agreed on the necessity of internalizing SDGs into corporate strategies such as focusing on greenhouse gas issues in trend with the transition to a low-carbon economy as well as encouraging perception change of corporate leaders. They said that while they try to link the SDGs and human rights management issues with their core businesses and to further implement such goals at their business sites and based on stakeholders, it is yet to be communicated company-wide and incorporated into the mainstream agenda. Most of the participants agreed on improving awareness and leadership on the SDGs within the energy, natural resources and chemical industry in Korea.
Global Compact Network Korea (GCNK) plans to organize working groups on Business and human rights, Anti-corruption and SDGs this year, which aims to provide guidelines and networking opportunities for local companies. Also, CSR Academy will be arranged to support new UNGC members for enhancing CSR capacities.
The next seminar on <Financial Services> and <Transportation> are scheduled on 29th of March and 4th of May respectively to support our companies in implementing the SDGs by providing sectorial training and guidance materials from the finance and transportation sector. We welcome potential members to take part in the upcoming events.