The movement of sustainability is rapidly becoming a mainstream topic across a variety of different sectors. It is a common assumption that younger generations are more greatly concerned with global challenges. Born in the digital age, Millennials and Gen Z are seen to be more health-conscious, socially aware and environmentally responsible. We caught up with Camilla, to discuss how trends in sustainability have been evolving since she started her career and why they are important.
Having always had an interest in the environment I started my further education studying a Master of Arts in Geography, which then lead me to the Environmental Partnership Management course at Aberdeen University. The course highlighted the importance of partnerships, joint ventures and collaboration between individuals and companies in order to combine knowledge and expertise to further the development of a sustainable future. Having chosen to focus the topic of most of my assignments on the circular economy, the course highlighted the connections between social, political, economic and ethical aspects that need to be considered and evaluated.
Our generation has the opportunity to raise the sustainability profile across multiple platforms. May it be through education, economic or social factors, it is important that we lead the way, to champion sustainability and the evolution of a circular economy. Connecting brands, business and people to encourage a healthier relationship towards consumption and waste is crucial to the future of the planet. As our generation looks to take over leading roles in business in the near future, engraining sustainable practices is critical to ensuring these important aspects become the norm in business operations.
I think that this has been heavily influenced by several factors, including legislation, environmental crisis and trends from high profile businesses/people. The combination of a growing population and consumerist lifestyles is putting pressure on finite resources, leaving us with no other option but to implement change. There is a lot of focus at the moment on businesses implementing carbon zero practices, however offsetting emissions by planting trees or buying carbon credits will never be enough to sustain the planet. Without enforcing change through developing more legislation, policies and monitoring adjustments we run the risk of being greenwashed. The whole supply chain from raw material to end product and waste management needs to be taken into account – this is where companies like SEM can help.
There are a lot of trends that are in the spotlight at the moment, such as producing and selling carbon credits; sustainable fashion made from bamboo, hemp and plastic bottles; electric vehicles and the recycling of lithium-ion batteries; and tree planting initiatives to offset personal carbon emissions etc. However, I think that the most important projects revolve around water and food security, for example:
Throughout my academic career, I have encountered many aspects covering geography, international relations, economics, politics and business. These aspects can all be applied to my role here at SEM, especially when I am conducting market research. By constantly reading, learning and widening my knowledge of ongoing global affairs and rising challenges facing humanity, it allows me to seek out the opportunities where SEMs innovative solutions to be applied.
I have always had a dream of doing my part to help save the world. By working for SEM, developing technologies at a global scale and working with influential clients in a wide array of industries, we are actually making a difference. Implementing sustainable, carbon reducing, resource saving and most importantly environmentally friendly technologies, to help aid the evolution of a circular economy.