Sustainability Royal Dutch Shell

Topics: Sustainability, Royal Dutch Shell, Sustainable development Pages: 23 (6611 words) Published: April 29, 2013
Table of Contents Page

1. Executive Summary2

2. Introduction3

3. Definition of Sustainability…….3

4. An Overview of Sustainability ………...……4

5. Shell’s Strategic Approach to Sustainability6

6. Literature focusing three sustainable issues9

7. Theory/Models used to evaluate Shell’s response to sustainability12

8. Recommendation on What Shell could do to become a sustainable business14

9. Conclusion15

10. References 17

Executive Summary

Sustainability in companies is a broad subject. In order for companies to be sustainable, they have to use several business models such as Triple Bottom Line, Natural Capitalism, The Natural Step, Cradle-to-cradle, the Three Tier model and many other (Eklington, 2004; Hawken et al, 1999; Robert, 2002; McDonough et al, 2009 and Sethi, 1975). Sustainability in business terms has several definitions. According to the Financial Times (2013), business sustainability is managing the triple bottom line which is a process whereby companies manage their financial, social and environmental risks. Alternatively, it can be defined as a business that can represent resiliency over a period of time and survive shocks because it is related to healthy economy, social and environmental systems. Other definitions relates to sustainability being the ability of people and organisations to preserve the remaining natural resources and use these resources wisely in order to sustain an environmentally healthy future. It also relates to governments creating policies to better the environment. According to the Brundtland (1987), report by the UN Commission on Economic Development, it described sustainability as that which “meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own goals”. The aim of this report was to evaluate how Royal Dutch Shell also known as Shell Company interprets and applies the concept of sustainability in both a strategic and operational sense. It also gave recommendations on what Shell could do to move quickly to the direction of becoming a sustainable business.

This report has eight parts. First was the introduction of Shell. Second, it defined sustainability. Third, it gave an overview of sustainability. Fourth it discussed Shell’s strategic approach to sustainability. Fifth, it reviewed three sustainable issues, namely, economic, social and environment. Sixth, it discussed the theory/models used to evaluate Shell’s response to sustainability. Seventh, it recommended what Shell could do to become a sustainable business. Lastly, it drew its conclusion that overall Shell’s strategic approach showed an understanding of sustainability issues that it faced and measures needed to increase sustainable behaviour although there was lack of consistency between its corporate leadership, local leadership and operational behaviour.


The Royal Dutch Shell, also known as Shell is a petroleum multinational company that originated from the Dutch and British region. Shell was started in February 1907 and merged with the Royal Dutch petroleum in order to compete on an international scale with other predominant petroleum companies. Shell is registered in the UK as a public limited company with its main headquarters in Netherlands. It is a worldwide group of oil, gas petrochemical companies. It produces and trades multiple energy resources. Shell deals in providing products such as biofuels, wind, solar power and hydrogen. It also provides technical and consultation services together with expertise in research and development that cater to people within the energy industry. All Shell operations tend to observe business principles such as...
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