Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), GRI Certified Training, GRI Standards Exam, Sustainability

GRI Standards Exam – Things to consider

GRI G4 Exam
GRI Standards Exam

Last week I received an email inquiring about my experience with the GRI Standards Exam. This reminded me that several years have passed since I wrote about my experience with the GRI G4 Exam.

Definitely time for an update!

Things to consider about the GRI Standards Exam

Although completing the GRI Certified Standards Course is not a prerequisite, GRI recommends that exam candidates take the course. I agree because I have experience taking the GRI Standards Exam and am a trainer with the ISOSGroup that delivers GRI’s Certified Training. I know how the course can help you to understand the standards and to apply them. If you have taken the course, GRI gives a 20% discount off the exam fee.

After completing the course, you should study for the exam by reading the standards carefully and taking notes. Understanding how to apply the standards is important. I studied, and it paid off.

Once you register for the exam, you will be given access to sample questions. This helps to understand the format and type of questions to expect.

GRI’s Online Learning Platform administers the exam. This allows the convenience of taking the exam from any location with Internet access. You need a webcam and microphone because you will be recorded while taking the exam. If you have not used a similar test platform, you definitely will want to understand the setup details before hand. This involves making sure that your equipment is compatible with the platform and you are comfortable with the instructions.

You have 60 minutes to answer 40 questions. During the exam you have access to a non-searchable pdf of the consolidated set of standards. Don’t waste much time scrolling through the pdf document looking for answers. As with any timed exam, you need to pace yourself.

Once you pass the exam, your name will be listed with the other successful exam candidates’ names on the GRI website.

Good luck!!

 

 

 

 

ESG, Internal Controls, Sustainability Reporting

Improve the Reliability of ESG Data

Internal and external decision makers need reliable environmental, social, and governance (ESG) data. Reliable data not only builds trust with external users, it helps internal users identify and mitigate risks more accurately. Take a look at new guidance from The World Business Council for Sustainable Development. Because suggestions align with COSO Internal Control Framework, application of the framework will be familiar to those in financial accounting.

Guidance on improving the quality of ESG information for decision-making

 

SDGs, Sustainability, Sustainability Reporting, Sustainable Development Goals

SDG 17 Partnerships for the Goals

SDG 17 Partnerships for the Goals is part of my series on the SDGs.

United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 17
SWR supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Finance

  • Strengthen domestic resource mobilization, including through international support to developing countries, to improve domestic capacity for tax and other revenue collection
  • Developed countries to implement fully their official development assistance commitments, including the commitment by many developed countries to achieve the target of 0.7 per cent of ODA/GNI to developing countries and 0.15 to 0.20 per cent of ODA/GNI to least developed countries ODA providers are encouraged to consider setting a target to provide at least 0.20 per cent of ODA/GNI to least developed countries
  • Mobilize additional financial resources for developing countries from multiple sources
  • Assist developing countries in attaining long-term debt sustainability through coordinated policies aimed at fostering debt financing, debt relief and debt restructuring, as appropriate, and address the external debt of highly indebted poor countries to reduce debt distress
  • Adopt and implement investment promotion regimes for least developed countries

Technology

  • Enhance North-South, South-South and triangular regional and international cooperation on and access to science, technology and innovation and enhance knowledge sharing on mutually agreed terms, including through improved coordination among existing mechanisms, in particular at the United Nations level, and through a global technology facilitation mechanism
  • Promote the development, transfer, dissemination and diffusion of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries on favourable terms, including on concessional and preferential terms, as mutually agreed
  • Fully operationalize the technology bank and science, technology and innovation capacity-building mechanism for least developed countries by 2017 and enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology

Capacity building

  • Enhance international support for implementing effective and targeted capacity-building in developing countries to support national plans to implement all the sustainable development goals, including through North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation

Trade

  • Promote a universal, rules-based, open, non-discriminatory and equitable multilateral trading system under the World Trade Organization, including through the conclusion of negotiations under its Doha Development Agenda
  • Significantly increase the exports of developing countries, in particular with a view to doubling the least developed countries’ share of global exports by 2020
  • Realize timely implementation of duty-free and quota-free market access on a lasting basis for all least developed countries, consistent with World Trade Organization decisions, including by ensuring that preferential rules of origin applicable to imports from least developed countries are transparent and simple, and contribute to facilitating market access

Systemic issues

Policy and institutional coherence

  • Enhance global macroeconomic stability, including through policy coordination and policy coherence

Enhance policy coherence for sustainable development

  • Respect each country’s policy space and leadership to establish and implement policies for poverty eradication and sustainable development

Multi-stakeholder partnerships

  • Enhance the global partnership for sustainable development, complemented by multi-stakeholder partnerships that mobilize and share knowledge, expertise, technology and financial resources, to support the achievement of the sustainable development goals in all countries, in particular developing countries
  • Encourage and promote effective public, public-private and civil society partnerships, building on the experience and resourcing strategies of partnerships

Data, monitoring and accountability

  • By 2020, enhance capacity-building support to developing countries, including for least developed countries and small island developing States, to increase significantly the availability of high-quality, timely and reliable data disaggregated by income, gender, age, race, ethnicity, migratory status, disability, geographic location and other characteristics relevant in national contexts
  • By 2030, build on existing initiatives to develop measurements of progress on sustainable development that complement gross domestic product, and support statistical capacity-building in developing countries

 

ANZ supports SDG 17 Partnerships for the Goals by describing their employee volunteering participation.

 

Ericsson provides support for SDG 17 in several ways. One was the launch of a report discussing how business can play a role in achieving the SDGs.

 

Another example for Ericsson is how the company is involved in humanitarian responses during major disasters.

 

We have come to the end of the 17 SDGs. My next post will be a recap of all 17.

 

 

SDGs, Sustainability, Sustainability Reporting, Sustainable Development Goals

SDG 15 Life on Land

United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 15
SWR supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

SDG 15 Life on Land is a continuation of my series on the SDGs.

“The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) define global sustainable development priorities and aspirations for 2030 and seek to mobilize global efforts around a common set of goals and targets. The SDGs call for worldwide action among governments, business and civil society to end poverty and create a life of dignity and opportunity for all, within the boundaries of the planet.”

SDG 15 Life on Land includes the following:

  • By 2020, ensure the conservation, restoration and sustainable use of terrestrial and inland freshwater ecosystems and their services, in particular forests, wetlands, mountains and drylands, in line with obligations under international agreements
  • By 2020, promote the implementation of sustainable management of all types of forests, halt deforestation, restore degraded forests and substantially increase afforestation and reforestation globally
  • By 2030, combat desertification, restore degraded land and soil, including land affected by desertification, drought and floods, and strive to achieve a land degradation-neutral world
  • By 2030, ensure the conservation of mountain ecosystems, including their biodiversity, in order to enhance their capacity to provide benefits that are essential for sustainable development
  • Take urgent and significant action to reduce the degradation of natural habitats, halt the loss of biodiversity and, by 2020, protect and prevent the extinction of threatened species
  • Promote fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and promote appropriate access to such resources, as internationally agreed
  • Take urgent action to end poaching and trafficking of protected species of flora and fauna and address both demand and supply of illegal wildlife products
  • By 2020, introduce measures to prevent the introduction and significantly reduce the impact of invasive alien species on land and water ecosystems and control or eradicate the priority species
  • By 2020, integrate ecosystem and biodiversity values into national and local planning, development processes, poverty reduction strategies and accounts
  • Mobilize and significantly increase financial resources from all sources to conserve and sustainably use biodiversity and ecosystems
  • Mobilize significant resources from all sources and at all levels to finance sustainable forest management and provide adequate incentives to developing countries to advance such management, including for conservation and reforestation
  • Enhance global support for efforts to combat poaching and trafficking of protected species, including by increasing the capacity of local communities to pursue sustainable livelihood opportunities

The importance of SDG 15 Life on Land for businesses can be seen in a  World Business Council for Sustainable Development video. Companies that rely specifically on products from land have a large stake in protecting land. Unilever, Ericsson, and SAB Miller are three companies that reference SDG 15 as being important to their businesses.

Unilever supports SDG 15 Life on Land because many of it products depend on forests and agriculture. Unilever‘s video explains the importance of land preservation to its business.

 

Ericsson has a direct connection to the land with its robots that detect parasites.

In an effort to protect life on land, SABMiller is working with its sugarcane farming operations in Honduras to modify traditional procedures for washing the crop, to decrease pesticide use by 27%, and to reduce the burning of post harvest vegetation.

 

SWR supports SDG 15 Life on Land. All SWR blog posts are created using solar power and are hosted by renewable energy sources!

SDGs, Sustainability, Sustainability Reporting, Sustainable Development Goals

SDG 12 Responsible Consumption and Production

United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 12
SWR supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

SDG 12 Responsible Consumption and Production is a continuation of my series on the SDGs.

You can watch a short video on SDG 12.

“The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) define global sustainable development priorities and aspirations for 2030 and seek to mobilize global efforts around a common set of goals and targets. The SDGs call for worldwide action among governments, business and civil society to end poverty and create a life of dignity and opportunity for all, within the boundaries of the planet.”

SDG 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

  • Implement the 10-year framework of programmes on sustainable consumption and production, all countries taking action, with developed countries taking the lead, taking into account the development and capabilities of developing countries
  • By 2030, achieve the sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources
  • By 2030, halve per capita global food waste at the retail and consumer levels and reduce food losses along production and supply chains, including post-harvest losses
  • By 2020, achieve the environmentally sound management of chemicals and all wastes throughout their life cycle, in accordance with agreed international frameworks, and significantly reduce their release to air, water and soil in order to minimize their adverse impacts on human health and the environment
  • By 2030, substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and reuse
  • Encourage companies, especially large and transnational companies, to adopt sustainable practices and to integrate sustainability information into their reporting cycle
  • Promote public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities
  • By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature
  • Support developing countries to strengthen their scientific and technological capacity to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption and production
  • Develop and implement tools to monitor sustainable development impacts for sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products
  • Rationalize inefficient fossil-fuel subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption by removing market distortions, in accordance with national circumstances, including by restructuring taxation and phasing out those harmful subsidies, where they exist, to reflect their environmental impacts, taking fully into account the specific needs and conditions of developing countries and minimizing the possible adverse impacts on their development in a manner that protects the poor and the affected communities

UPS, Dupont, and Ericsson report on SDG 12  Responsible Consumption and Production in their sustainability reports.

UPS addresses SDG 12 with its policies that require customers to comply with all applicable laws and regulations regarding packages for shipment with UPS.

UPS – SDG – 12. UPS requires that package contents comply with all applicable regulations.

Dupont supports SDG 12 Responsible Consumption and Production by developing enzymes that increase the shelf life of food and providing education that demonstrates the reuse of packaging into useful objects.

Dupont’s Virtuous Cycle Project

Ericsson takes back products in an effort to process e-waste in an environmentally responsible manner.

 

SDG 13 will be discussed in my next blog post.

I am engaging in Responsible Consumption and Production, too.  All SWR blog posts are created using solar power and are hosted by renewable energy sources!