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Glossary of terms

Skip to letter: B C D E G H I R S

Benchmark values

compare business processes and performance metrics to industry bests or best practices from other companies.

Business continuity planning

a plan to continue operations if a place of business is affected by different levels of disaster.

Carbon offsetting

a reduction in carbon dioxide or greenhouse gases emissions in order to compensate for, or to offset an emission elsewhere.


a few of many sustainability reporting frameworks.

Chemical inventory

a tool that facilitates the collection and storage of information related to chemical types and amounts.

Corrective actions

improvements to an organisation's processes in order to eliminate causes of non-conformities or other undesirable situations.

CDP (formerly "Carbon Disclosure Project")

a UK based organisation working with shareholders and corporations to disclose the greenhouse gas emissions of major organisations.

DJSI (Dow Jones Sustainability Index)

a reporting framework launched in 1999, evaluating the sustainability performance of the largest 2,500 companies listed on the Dow Jones Index.

Emissions inventory

a database that lists, by source, the amount of air pollutants discharged into the atmosphere of a community during a given time period.


is about becoming accountable for the economic, environmental and social consequences of your business activities and effectively managing your organisation's environmental data and processes. It covers air, waste and water as well as reduction planning, carbon offsetting and emissions inventories.

Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol

an international accounting tool for government and business leaders to understand, quantify and manage greenhouse gas emissions. Scope 1 and 2 cover direct emissions sources and scope 3 cover all indirect emissions due to the activities of an organisation. These include emissions from both suppliers and consumers.

GRI (Global Reporting Initiative)

one of the broadest sustainability reporting frameworks that is widely used around the world.

Health and Safety

is about preventing injury at work and reducing the economic and social costs of health and safety failures. This focuses on hazard, incident and injury reporting and management. It also covers chemicals and risk assessment.

ISO management

a model to follow when setting up and operating a management system. Like most standards, they are the result of international and expert consensus and therefore offer the benefit of global management experience and best practice.

Responsible Business

often referred to as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), this focuses on community involvement and charitable giving as well as community engagement. It also touches on employee engagement, development, training and social data such as employee health/HR/life balance.

Risk and Compliance

focuses on business continuity planning, risk and compliance management and regulatory change management.

Scenario planning

a strategic planning method that organisation's use to make flexible long-term plans.

Scope 3 reporting

scope 3 emissions are all indirect emissions that occur in the value chain of the reporting company, including both upstream and downstream emissions.

Supplier benchmarking

compares business processes and performance metrics within the supply chain to industry bests or best practices from other companies.

Supply Chain

is about transparency and disclosing data within your supply chain as well as delivering change to reduce risk within your business. This covers supplier benchmarking, feedback and management as well as buyer compliance and scope 3 reporting.