Sustainability is more than planting a new tree for every one that is felled. Sustainable management aims to maintain a world worth living in for all people: ecologically compatible, socially just and economically efficient. The protection of people and the environment shapes the entrepreneurial self-image of the TÜV organizations. They ensure that plants, products and equipment function as safely as possible. They check emissions from vehicles and plants or protect water and soil from contamination.
But sustainability is more than that. The United Nations' 2030 Agenda defines 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that relate, for example, to climate and biodiversity protection, decent work, quality education, clean water and sustainable consumption and production. The 17 goals are addressed to governments worldwide, but also to science and business and, last but not least, to each and every one of us.
New times, new tasks
For the TÜV Association and its members, too, topics such as, climate protection, occupational health and safety, fair supply chains and education are coming into even sharper focus. In their work, they always have the United Nations' Agenda 2030 and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) it contains in mind.
TÜV companies can already support many of these goals with their services. By testing, certifying and advising, they help companies to make their products and processes not only more efficient, but also more sustainable. This applies to future-oriented management, the sustainable use of the environment and resources, and corporate social responsibility. With the corresponding certificates, companies can not only demonstrate their quality awareness and ensure optimal processes, but also demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and the SDGs. TÜV organizations act as a strong partner for a sustainable future that meets the needs of people and the environment.
TÜV organizations are active in these areas of responsibility
- Ecological standards
Many companies are already making efforts to align their actions with environmental aspects - for example, by committing to implement the ambitious emission reduction targets of the Paris Climate Agreement. The German government's Climate Protection Act and the European Green Deal also provide a political framework for the consistent expansion of renewable energies, intelligent mobility concepts, the committed decarbonization of industry, sustainable agriculture and climate-neutral construction and housing. Consumers also contribute to protecting the environment and climate through their purchasing decisions. This applies to green electricity as well as to textiles produced in an environmentally friendly manner. The TÜV organizations can ensure that the legal requirements are met and adhered to. They help consumers to identify climate- and environmentally friendly products and help companies to demonstrate their environmental commitment.
- Social standards
Labor and social standards are playing an increasingly important role in production. This involves respect for human rights, fair and safe working conditions, avoidance of child labor, but also combating corruption and bribery. To ensure compliance with social and environmental standards throughout the supply chain, independent confirmation of the conformity of products and services as well as production conditions with applicable laws and standards is of great importance. Testing organizations such as TÜV can play an important role here.
- Sustainability reports
Public interest in how sustainable business practices are implemented at companies is noticeably increasing. In order to inform stakeholders appropriately and to be able to manage sustainability goals within the company, many companies disclose social and environmental information in addition to financial information in sustainability reports. These reports are an important instrument for making environmental awareness, future orientation and social commitment transparent. The TÜV organizations support companies in preparing their sustainability reports and check the completeness, balance and accuracy of the information.
You can find out more about the TÜV organizations' sustainability audits here.
The TÜV organizations themselves are also working intensively to expand and systematize their commitment to sustainability and to set themselves concrete goals. This applies with regard to services, which in future will also be assessed on the basis of their impact on the environment. The company's own carbon footprint, which is generated by business travel, for example, is also to be consistently reduced. The TÜV Association and its members are facing up to their responsibility - for people, society and the environment.