Many businesses around the world have advocated for going all-in on sustainability, but IKEA has been at the forefront of this, with ambitious targets set for the near future. Operationally, they have switched all their lighting to energy-efficient LEDs, as well as sourcing all their cotton from renewable sources. However, that’s only the tip of the iceberg. IKEA are striving towards 100% renewable energy. As their video mentions, they have installed over 250,000 solar panels that have helped power their operations (at a cost of €2.1Bn) and have also been heavy investors in wind energy. In 2014, IKEA purchased a 165-megawatt wind farm in Texas, which will bring its American power production from wind to the equivalent of 90,000 households.
IKEA have encompassed their environmental attitude in a project called Live Lagom, a simple Swedish philosophy that means ‘just the right amount’. This has in mind that we can have a healthy balance with the world around us without having to make any extreme changes and without denying ourselves anything. The project strives to help people make easy changes in their lifestyles to have a positive impact on the environment.
Just like IKEA, Unilever are a business that has sustainability at heart. They are very transparent, and accept that their environmental impact per consumer has risen by around 6% since 2010 (source). However, they have had many successes. They have seen a 39% reduction of CO2 per tonne of produce since 2008, and aim to eliminate coal from their energy grid and source their electricity from renewable sources instead. Unilever also have plans to reduce their impact through water use and waste produced, eliminating non-hazardous waste that goes to landfill.
Their short advertisement touches on their sustainable living plan, outlining a future where no animals are endangered and we are all able to sustainably produce our own food. As they say, businesses have a big part to play, as do all of us as individuals.
The LEGO Group have in the past have had quite a focus on sustainability. They have recently invested 1Bn DKK (Danish Kroner) in their search for sustainable materials. However, this did not deter Greenpeace from producing their second-most viewed video ever. The video is quick to bring tears to eyes, shedding light on the harsh reality that is the oil industry and its effects on our world. The video shows people, houses, polar bears, dogs and many others being drowned in a thick sludge, what we can only assume to be a representation of an oil spill. This moving advertisement is a call from Greenpeace for the LEGO Group to end their partnership with Oil Giant Shell. Alas, the campaign worked. Lego announced in October 2014 they would end their partnership with Shell, only demonstrating the power of advertising.