This relevance to the organization and potential impact



report will evaluate environmental Sustainability practices against theory and
best practice by identifying 3 course concepts including hierarchy of waste, Environmental
auditing and reporting and voluntary Business initiatives. Specially focusing on
commercial bank’s environmental sustainability approaches and critical evaluation
of chosen course concepts. This will include secondary sources and to make
justified conclusions and recommendations based on the issues evaluated Environmental
sustainability theory linked to organizational environmental sustainability

well as report will consider the strategic relevance to the organization and
potential impact on the organization’s brand and competitive situation. Finally,
it will shows Conclusion and Recommendations on the strategic relevance of
environmental sustainability to the commercial bank environmental
sustainability practices.

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1.      Introduction. 3
2.      Environmental Sustainability
theoretical review.. 4
1.      Voluntary business Initiatives. 5
2.      Hierarchy of waste. 6
3.      Environmental Auditing and reporting. 8
3.      Evaluation of commercial bank’s
environmental sustainability practices. 9
4.      Conclusion and recommendations. 11
Reference. 12























Theories of
sustainability attempt to prioritize and integrate social responses to
environmental and cultural problems. Most of the companies are interested in
using those sustainable practices for their day today business activities. When
it comes to the sustainability, there are three core areas that contribute to
the philosophy and social science of sustainable development. Sustainable
development means development that meets the needs of the present without
compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. That
means: It have to be considered the future when we take decisions in the
present. Followings are three main core areas of sustainable development.

Economic Development

Social Development

Environmental sustainability

Out of those three core
areas, Environmental sustainability is really important.  Because people won’t be survived without the
environment. So it should be have relevant policies for companies to protect
the environment. Humanity has entered a new era, called the Anthropcene, in
which human activity has become the dominant influence on climate and the
environment. Because of the population growth, world income inequality and
rapid industrialization of many developing nations, world community is unable
to maintain a sustainable development. In case of that world has to face lot of
dangerous global issues. Some of them are climate change, Ozone depletion,
Resource scarcity, decline of biodiversity and threats to marine ecosystems.
These issues has been considered as very critical and dangerous issues for the
future of the world.

So for a better future,
companies and governments have to concentrate on a sustainable development. In
many nations government regulates business activity in order to protect the
environment. They do it by setting common standards, taking the cost of
pollution control out of competition, providing economic incentives and offer
systems for resolving disputes. Air pollution, land pollution and water
pollution are the major areas of environmental regulation. Government has to
take care of those three major areas. In the same time, there are cost and
benefits of environmental regulations. Some of the benefits are drop down the
emissions of pollutants, improvement in air and water quality, people love
longer and healthier in less polluted environments.

As well as
organizations also can contribute to the sustainability. So this report will
explain how the organization can contribute to the sustainability specially in
environmental sustainability. There are few concepts and theories which can be
used to evaluate the management of companies’ environmental sustainability
practices. So this report will explain the how the Commercial bank has used those environmental practices. Having set
a benchmark in banking in Sri Lanka commercial bank have set standards, created
an identity and forged an unsurpassable trend. Recognized as a trend setter, it
has maintained cultural identity while providing a range of products and
services. Powered by state-of-the-art technology and driven by a team of highly
motivated, dynamic individuals commercial bank has become the leader in private
banking in Sri Lanka. Furthermore, this report will explain commercial bank’s
current sustainability practices and recommendations with respect to the commercial
bank’s global practices.

 Environmental Sustainability theoretical review


So when it comes to the
environmental sustainability, We all know what we need to do to protect the
environment, whether that is recycling, reducing our power consumption by
switching electronic devices off rather than using standby, by walking short
journeys instead of taking the bus. Businesses are regulated to prevent
pollution and to keep their own carbon emissions low. In the same time there
are incentives to installing renewable power sources in our homes and
businesses. (1994, Basiago, A. D.) Out of the three pillars in sustainability
environmental protection is most important factor for the future. It helps us
to understand how we should study and protect ecosystems, air quality,
integrity and sustainability of our resources and focusing on the elements that
place stress on the environment.

Company should have responsible interaction with the
environment to avoid depletion or degradation of natural resources and allow
for long-term environmental quality. When it comes to the managing the
sustainability, environmental regulations establish minimum standards for environmental
performance. Many firms are now voluntarily moving beyond compliance.

It is really amazing, because
we look at the natural environment, we see that it has a rather remarkable
ability to rejuvenate itself and sustain its viability. For example, when a
tree falls, it decomposes, adding nutrients to the soil. Those factors will
help sustain suitable conditions so future saplings can grow. (1996, Basiago,
A. D.)

sustainability can be explained using from some theories. Voluntary business
initiatives, environmental auditing, environmental partnerships, circular
economy, hierarchy of waste are some theories can be used to explain the
environmental sustainability. (Goodland, R ,1995)

Voluntary business Initiatives


When it comes to the Voluntary
environmental initiatives, which are private or public efforts to improve
corporate environmental performance beyond existing legal requirements. It has
become an important element in the mix of public policies and corporate
strategies for managing industrial impacts on the environment. There are some voluntary
business initiatives which executed by the companies.

– life cycle analysis

 Industrial ecology

 Extended product responsibility

Carbon neutrality

 – Technology cooperation

When it comes to the
voluntary business initiatives on of the best approach is carbon neutrality. An
organization or individual produces net zero emission of greenhouse gases; this
is usually accomplished by a combination of energy efficiencies and carbon
effects. Lalan Group is a diversified conglomerate with expertise in over 12
sectors and has been in operation since 1940 with branch offices in UK and USA.
Lalan has an extensive global network encompassing panindustry interests in
rubber, tea and other plantation crops ranging from cardamom, cinnamon, coffee
and stevia. Lalan group has been
recognized as the first glove manufacturer to offer zero carbon gloves by
offsetting carbon emissions per glove with carbon credit earned. (Source,




Hierarchy of waste


The waste hierarchy,
typically displayed as an inverted triangle offers a hierarchical approach to
show most preferred versus least preferred approaches to solid waste generation
and management. When it comes to the  actual categories may vary in specific name
and number, depending upon the particular group using this model, but the
essential thought process is that the avoidance of consumption and source
reduction, along with reuse, are preferable to recycling, which in turn is
preferred to waste-to-energy and ultimately to placement in landfills. (EN ISO
14004, 2010)

Source Reduction and Reuse

Source reduction can be
recognized as waste prevention, means reducing waste at the source, and is the
most environmentally preferred strategy. That includes reusing or donating
items, buying in bulk, reducing packaging, redesigning products, and reducing
toxicity. Source reduction can:

Save natural resources,
Reduce pollution,
Reduce the toxicity of our waste,
Conserve energy


Recycling and Composting

Recycling is a
process of activities that includes collecting used, reused, or unused items
that would otherwise be considered waste which is proceed in to  recyclable products into raw materials; and
remanufacturing the recycled raw materials into new products. When it comes to
the recycling, it assists to prevent the emission of many greenhouse gases and
water pollutants, Supply valuable raw materials to industry, save energy,
Create more jobs, Stimulate the development of greener technologies and to conserve
resources for our children’s future. As well as composting is also very good initiative
to protect the environment. That makes environment prosperous.

Treatment and Disposal

Prior to disposal,
treatment can help reduce the volume and toxicity of waste. Because of that
treatments can be physical, chemical, and biological. Landfills are
the most common form of waste disposal and are an important component of an
integrated waste management system.

So in this era, most of
the companies used to execute those hierarchy of waste approach to maintain a sustainable
development. It will directly affect to the environmental sustainability. In real
world this approach used very effectively. Commercial
bank has been able to implement a garbage disposal system to ensure that waste
is sorted to facilitate recycling of paper, polythene and organic waste. In
case of that, company employees are required to segregate waste material as
‘Paper’, ‘Polythene’ and ‘Bio- degradable Waste’ and store these materials in
separate, colour-coded garbage disposal bins. This process has been monitored
by a separate department and that helps them a lot. (source,


Environmental Auditing and reporting


is really important to execute environmental auditing and reporting approach because
environmental audit is a management tool consisting of a systematic,
documented, periodic and objective evaluation of environmental performance,
management systems and equipment with the aim of firstly, facilitating
management control of environmental practices and secondly, assessing
compliance with an operation’s or activity’s environmental policies, including
meeting regulatory requirements (UNE-801-94 -Environmental Auditing ,Spain).

auditing and reporting includes

 internal auditing of systems and procedures
for measuring, recording and reporting performance data;

independent validation of systems and
procedures for measuring, recording, and reporting performance data;

Independent evaluations and commentaries
by external experts regarding an organization’s economic, environmental, and
social performance and/or management processes.

is a way for leading companies to track their progress toward meeting their sustainability
goals. Mostly now, many firms have moved to integrate their social and
environmental reporting into a single sustainability report and that help them
to achieve their sustainability goals.

MAS holdings
manages a portfolio of businesses with a revenue of USD 1.7bn and is positioned
as one of the world’s most recognized design to delivery solution providers in
the realm of the apparel and textile manufacturing. They have maintained their
environmental reporting in to certain level. They have set their own objective
on environmental sustainability based on their annual environmental auditing
and report information. (Source,



Evaluation of commercial bank’s environmental
sustainability practices


When it comes to the
Commercial bank, they have initiated several sustainability approaches including
economic, environmental and social. Some of them are; donation programs,
funding to ecofriendly boats, several CSR projects and many no of
sustainability programs. (Source,

Social and Environmental
Management System  makes the Social and
Environmental Co-coordinator and the team responsible to the Board of Directors
for overseeing the organization’s identification and management of economic,
environmental and social performance issues, including relevant risks and
opportunities, and ensuring compliance with internal circulars and regulatory
requirements. Commercial bank has given that much of attention on
sustainability requirements. With the cornerstone of their strategic intent
being keeping with the best working standards, we at Commercial Bank decided to
build and implement a Social and Environmental Management System. In the same
time SEMS manages the social and environmental issues and risks associated with
the Bank’s investments in a comprehensive manner. So that will directly assist
to the management of environmental sustainability development.

As well as to ensure
that all projects are reviewed against the stipulated criteria as per SEMS to
ensure that all projects financed are designed, built, operated and maintained
in compliance with the provisions of SEMS and to educate clients on the long
term benefits that will accrue to us all by complying with measures that
enhance environmental sustainability and thus the well-being of their

to designated chain of command vis-à-vis sustainability, the Bank’s Social and
Environmental Co-ordinator reports to the Head of Corporate Finance who
oversees the impact and assessment of sustainability issues of the Bank’s
operations and ensures that resources are made available for efficient
management of such issues. And also head of Corporate Finance signs off on the
Bank’s Annual Environmental Performance Report. The Social and Environmental coordinator
ensures that all these procedures are implemented for each project and that
records of environmental reviews are maintained. This is the where commercial
bank has been able to maintain environmental
auditing and reporting effectively.


They are annually maintaining
environmental sustainability reporting and auditing. That assisted them to set
their sustainability goals and to achieve them.

When it comes to the
waste management (Hierarchy of waste) Environmental Material The Bank’s Paper
Management System ensures that waste paper within the organization is recycled
and reused wherever possible. Due emphasis is paid when instructing staff on
the importance of the reuse of used envelopes and paper. This is augmented by
awareness programs within the organization with a view to creating a paperless
office and reducing excessive printing of documents and e-mails, etc. As well
as commercial Bank implements a garbage disposal system to ensure that waste is
sorted to facilitate recycling of paper, polythene and organic waste. Company
motivated employees to regard segregate waste material as ‘Paper’, ‘Polythene’
and ‘Bio- degradable Waste’ and store these materials in separate, colour-coded
garbage disposal bins. That will make convenient for waste management.

As well as commercial bank’s
‘Green Loans’ provide necessary funds for those entrepreneurs who adopt
environmentally-friendly technologies. The Bank ensures that clients obtain the
necessary environmental clearance as and when required, including Environmental
Impact Assessment of the project to be undertaken.

Energy conservation and
environmentally friendly measures pervade all the Bank’s own building projects.
We are using variable air volume units in temperature control and ventilation
systems incorporating energy saving features among others. We also save energy
by controlling the air conditioning facilities at our Head Office, limiting
usage to normal working hours. The Bank’s water management initiative attempts
to reduce water usage at our Head Office. Our main source being ground water,
we are able to save on draw off from the National Water Supply System.

Bank has been aligned with
all environmental standards and they have achieves many rewards for that. As
well as company concept called ‘Green Loans’ provide concessionary funding for
those entrepreneurs who adopt environmentally-friendly technologies. The Bank
ensures that clients obtain the necessary environmental clearance as and when
required, including Environmental Impact Assessment of the project to be
undertaken. The Bank’s staff is instructed to revisit the compliance of these
certifications during the annual credit review of such project loans.



Conclusion and recommendations


Companies that are adopting these forward-looking practices
are accruing benefits. Commercial bank has found that its sustainability track
record gives it better access to market where a positive environmental track
record is becoming a more important component in selecting products. Most of
the companies like MAS holding, Brandix, Lalan holdings are focusing on helping
customers to reduce their emissions, And the same time they are growing revenue
and capturing new market shares. Companies are setting aggressive
sustainability goals – in the case of that for example, some companies tend to reduce 100 percent of fossil fuel use and greenhouse gas
emissions from its operations by 2040 –
and achieving business growth at the same time.

Commercial bank has been able to keep with the best
working standards, in the same time they have decided to build and implement a
Social and Environmental Management System (SEMS). SEMS reviews and manages the
social and environmental issues and risks associated with the Bank’s
investments in a comprehensive manner. The commercial bank credit policy
encompasses a Social and Environmental Policy, which sustains our position
while aiming to be the best both locally and regionally.

Adapting in to a sustainable development strategy is
some kind of costly strategy, In the same time they can earn benefit over those
cost occurred.  As an example, commercial
bank has been able maintain a waste management approach and in return they have
been received many benefits like materials, reduction of disposal costs etc.