Sustainable Business Network
The Sustainable Business Network is a not for profit organisation in New Zealand. Commonly known as the SBN, the network was created in October 2002 and is a forum for businesses who are interested in sustainable business practice and sustainable development. The Sustainable Business Network grew out of the merger of three similar organisations, Environmental Business Network, Businesses for Social Responsibility and Triple B.
The SBN defines sustainable business as integrating economic growth, social equity and environmental management. The organisation has been a leading proponent of the business case for sustainable business practice and linking sustainability minded businesses in New Zealand.
The National office of the SBN is based in New Lynn, Waitakere City, Auckland. Regional offices are also located in each of the SBN regions.
- Auckland, SBN Northern Region.
- Hamilton, SBN Waikato Region.
- Tauranga, SBN Bay of Plenty Region.
- Wellington, SBN Central Region.
- Christchurch, SBN Southern Region.
Governance of the SBN exists in the form of a National Board and five Regional Advisory Boards. The National Board is made up of five nationally elected members and five regionally elected members. The network has a diverse range of member organisations, including small & medium sized enterprises, micro businesses, large businesses and corporations, consultants, tertiary and research institutes and central and local government agencies.
The SBN operates two major programmes, The Get Sustainable Challenge and GreenFleet. In past years, the SBN has also operated a Building Cluster (which spawned the Green Building Council of New Zealand) and Organics Cluster.
The Get Sustainable Challenge
The Get Sustainable Challenge is a tool to help businesses establish where they stand in terms of sustainability and define action sustainability action. Business undertake an assessment and are provided with a detailed written report, identifying areas of sustainability being well served in the business and outlining aspects of the business where potential improvement can be made. The programme is backed up by written resources and workshops held in regional centres.
The sustainability assessment covers the following areas:
- Top level commitment, culture and decision making
- Future thinking
- What resources are going into your business
- Operational systems and processes
- What resources are being generated by your business
- Relationships and influence
Regional and National awards are also held annually to give recognition to businesses achieving in sustainability. The award categories are:
- Sustainable Business of the Year
- Trailblazer – Large (and Corporate)
- Trailblazer – Small and Medium
- Trailblazer – Not for profit
- Emerging – Large (and Corporate)
- Emerging – Small and Medium
- Sustainable Design and Innovation
GreenFleet is a sustainable transport program set up to help businesses reduce the impacts of its vehicles on the environment. This 3-step program provides a range of practical resources and advice that enable businesses to develop a more efficient fleet, save money, engage with the local community and do something to reduce the contribution transport makes to wider environmental problems.
The programme has three steps for members.
- Transport efficiency in the business.
- Being aware of developments in vehicle and fuel technology.
- Planting trees to offset carbon dioxide emissions.
Members currently plant 23 native New Zealand trees per members vehicle. This average figure is based on a petrol engine vehicle travelling 15,000km per year, with a fuel economy of 10 litres / 100 km. It also assumes that native NZ bush soaks up 125 tons carbon per hectare and restoration planting at 2,500 stems per hectare. In addition, the quantity of 23 trees per vehicle per year builds in a 10% mortality rate as a safety net for successful plantings.
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (February 2008)|
- Sustainable Business Network, (2006) Sustainable Business Review, Auckland
- Sustainable Business Network, (2006) Introduction to GreenFleet, Auckland
- Sustainable Business Network, (2005) Organics Cluster, Auckland
- Sustainable Business Network, (2006) Get Sustainable Challenge, Auckland
- Sustainable Business Network Northern Region, (2006) Information about SBN 2006, Auckland
- Sustainable Business Network, (2007) 2007 Get Sustainable Challenge pre Assessment Information, Auckland