Walmart Makes Progress Toward Positive Societal, Environmental Change Through ESG Initiatives
September 2, 2020 - In case you missed it, last week Walmart Inc. released its second Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report. Read Walmart's FY2020 ESG report here.
Walmart takes a shared value, whole-system approach to ESG. Their ESG initiatives aim to go beyond mitigating business risk. The company aims to address societal issues through business initiatives that create value for all stakeholders; and they seek, in collaboration with others, to transform underlying societal systems (such as retail workforce development and food supply chains) for long-term social, environmental and economic sustainability.
Learn more about Walmart's ESG approach here from Kathleen McLaughlin, executive vice president and chief sustainability officer for Walmart Inc. and president of the Walmart Foundation.
Below are some highlights from the report:
- Environmental: With respect to environmental issues, Walmart aims to do more than minimize the environmental footprint of Walmart operations; collaborating with suppliers, NGOs and others, the company aims to transform product supply chains end-to-end, industry-wide, for sustainability—reducing emissions, eliminating waste and fostering circularity of packaging and other materials, and sustaining natural resources all along the value chain.
- Social: Walmart prioritizes the social challenges most relevant to its customers, associates, suppliers, people who work in supply chains and live in the communities they serve. Through jobs, sourcing, relationships and capabilities, Walmart aims to create economic opportunity, advance equity and help strengthen social cohesion.
- Governance: Effective corporate governance is essential to achieving Walmart’s mission and creating long‑term value. The report describes Walmart’s commitment to stakeholder engagement; a diverse, high-performing and independent board; executive compensation aligned with long-term value creation; ESG leadership and oversight; robust ethics and compliance practices and strong corporate citizenship.
Business exists to serve society, and, in turn, serving society strengthens business. The world's problems demand big solutions and the collaborative efforts of many across sectors to transform systems. Walmart’s associates aspire to be part of the solution—to draw on the company’s passion and capabilities to spark the bold, collective action necessary to create a more sustainable and equitable future.