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Triple bottom line Elements of Sustainable Supply Chain Measures to Make Supply Chain Sustainable

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Climate change-related supply chain problems won’t go away anytime soon. Resource scarcity and supply chain disruptions are still being caused by extreme weather occurrences. Promoting a more environmentally friendly supply chain requires everyone to take steps to cut greenhouse gas emissions and invest in renewable energy. Beyond only procuring raw materials, supply chains can also be sustainable. We need to develop a flood of environmentally friendly procedures that complement one another at every stage of the supply chain to be environmentally mindful. Elkington, John’s theory of triple bottom line can play a significant role in making not only the supply chain sustainable but the whole business sustainable as well.

Three Elements of Sustainable Supply Chain

The three components of the triple bottom line theory, namely the environmental, social, and economic considerations, must be taken into consideration to make a business sustainable through good supply chain management. The following are the three components of a sustainable supply chain:

Environmental responsibility

This refers to safeguarding the environment from potential damage brought on by supply chain activities such as manufacturing, warehousing, packing, and other minor operations.

Financial Responsibility

It takes care of the business’s financial requirements. Shareholders, employers/employees, clients, customers, business partners, domestic institutions, and financial institutions are some of the participants in the financial markets.

Social responsibility

This refers to the morals, ethics, and charitable standards that society expects from businesses. In a sustainable supply chain, everyone is treated fairly, equally, and by their human rights.

Now let us try to understand how to make a sustainable supply chain:

Companies should take the following measures to achieve a more sustainable supply chain:

  • Identify the objectives and goals related to sustainability, and then develop a strategy to attain them. Include supply chain because it has a significant impact on the environmental, social, and economic impact of your company.
  • Recognize important problems and potential opportunities for improvement throughout the whole supply chain. Each stage of the production and operating process contributes to the supply chain’s environmental impact. To improve, businesses should be aware of the areas with the highest concentrations of pollutants and dangers.
  • Measurement and supply chain management technologies can be used to monitor development and identify weak points. Key performance indicators (KPIs) and guidelines have been developed by groups like The Sustainability Consortium, World Wildlife Fund, and The Sustainability Accounting Standards Board to assist consumer businesses in achieving their environmental objectives.
  • Establish supply chain sustainability objectives that align with overall sustainability objectives. To have the biggest impact on the global sustainability agenda and advance toward carbon neutrality, businesses should base their actions on scientific advice and governmental legislation.
  • Select additional sustainable suppliers and work with them. Organizations can decrease waste, costs, and environmental hazards by collaborating with manufacturers and pooling resources. For instance, combining delivery methods can cut down on emissions by preventing many half-empty cars from traveling in the same way.
  • Continue to be accountable throughout the procedure. Routine audits, the deployment of sustainability teams and programs, impact-tracking software tools, and customer-facing goals and progress reporting are all processes that can be put in place to ensure liability.
  • Invest in carbon offsets. Companies can also consider purchasing carbon offsets if they have less control over their supply chain or want to start having an impact right away. These are credits that assist in reducing an organization’s carbon emissions by funding green projects.


To address consumers’ growing awareness and sensitivity to environmental problems, businesses looking to restore supply chains have the opportunity to think about new and more environmentally friendly choices. If organizations wish to achieve sustainability in the supply chain, they should think about using the same reasoning with their tracking solutions.

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Shantanu Trivedi
Shantanu Trivedi
Shantanu Trivedi is working as a faculty at the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, Dehradun. He holds an MBA and a Ph.D. degree in Supply chain management. He has more than a decade of experience in teaching and research. He has published 2 books, 5 book chapters and more than 12 research papers and articles in international journals of repute. His research interest includes Supply chain management, agribusiness, online and distance education, Business sustainability and infrastructure management. He is the reviewer of many international publishing houses. He has presented his work and won awards at many research conferences and symposiums. He has worked on many research with state governments and the government of India. In his spare time, Shantanu loves to travel and explore nature.
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