Skip to main content

GreenBiz 350 Podcast

Episode 187: The WRI director on sustainable food systems; the lifecycle of corporate commitments

Plus, how reporting can help investors and more on China's Belt & Road Initiative.

Week In Review

Tune in around 4:37 for commentary.


The director of the World Resources Institute, Dan Lashof, on how to create a sustainable global food system (15:30)

How do you feed 10 billion people while preserving biodiversity, maintaining land to store carbon and keeping biomass at play for our energy systems? It's about responsibly using our global land budget, says Dan Lashof, director of the World Resources Institute for the United States. Much like a global carbon budget, managing the global land budget is about figuring out the most productive use in terms of growing food and sequestering carbon for different acres of land. Lashof discusses how to implement solutions for a sustainable food system, from behavior change, market fixes, policy levers and more.

How can reporting help investors? Make it value-based (22:29)

Sara Bernow from management consultancy McKinsey recently published an article investigating how sustainability reporting can help investors. There are three things, Bernow says: Investors are increasingly conscious of sustainability and financial performance; investors still struggle to make decisions from companies' sustainability reports; and alignment of reporting standards is seen as the major opportunity to close this gap. Bernow explains the challenges and opportunities, from materiality to risk to measuring.

GreenBiz's editorial intern, Cyan Zhong, on a summer of reporting on corporate sustainability (30:24)

Ever wonder what happens in the GreenBiz office? Northwestern Medill school of journalism graduate student Cyan Zhong found out. She spent her summer reporting on corporate sustainability and just released last week her heavily researched final article on the lifecycle of corporate sustainability reporting. From Citi to Adobe to Intel to Ingersoll Rand, she found that companies wanted to tell the story of their goals. Many had hit them earlier and were setting new ones, while others had set ambitious ones and were on track to meet them soon.

*Music in this episode by Lee Rosevere: "Credit Roll," "Curiousity," "Late Night Tales" and "Here's the Thing."

What's new at GreenBiz?

Energy resilience meets climate change. Technologies such as behind-the-meter energy storage and intelligent software are emerging to help companies and communities anticipate outages and keep the power flowing. Featuring speakers from energy services firm Faith Technologies, a former assistant secretary for energy with the U.S. Navy and a microgrid specialist from Rocky Mountain Institute. Register for this free session at 1 p.m. EST Sept. 10.

ESG, it's a cultural thing. Are your sustainability, well-being, social impact and diversity teams operating in siloes? Join us for this discussion — and new research — with WeSpire, Cox Enterprises and Novo Nordisk about how to embed broader environmental, social and governance priorities into corporate culture. Sign up to tune in at 1 p.m. EST Sept. 17.

Do we have a newsletter for you! We produce five weekly newsletters: GreenBuzz by Executive Editor Joel Makower (Monday), Transport Weekly by Senior Writer and Analyst Katie Fehrenbacher (Tuesday), VERGE Weekly by Executive Director Shana Rappaport and Editorial Director Heather Clancy (Wednesday), Energy Weekly by Senior Energy Analyst Sarah Golden (Thursday) and Circular Weekly by Director and Senior Analyst Lauren Phipps (Friday). You must subscribe to each newsletter in order to receive it. Please visit this page to choose the newsletters you want to receive.

Check out our Center Stage podcast, which features the best of live interviews on sustainable business and clean technology, conducted on stage at GreenBiz and VERGE conferences.

The GreenBiz Intelligence Panel is the survey body we poll regularly throughout the year on key trends and developments in sustainability. To become part of the panel, click here. Enrolling is free and should take two minutes.

Stay connected

To make sure you don't miss the newest episodes of GreenBiz 350, subscribe on iTunes. Have a question or suggestion for a future segment? E-mail us at [email protected].

More on this topic

More by This Author