|Edition Number:||1||SCC Approved:||--|
|Edition Date:||2011-11-02||DOD Approved:||--|
|Price Code:||A||ANSI Approved:||--|
2.1 UL 880 provides enterprise-level sustainability requirements that are applicable across sectors and national borders. It covers a full spectrum of sustainability issues – governance for sustainability, environmental performance, work force practices, customer and supply chain practices, and community engagement and human rights practices. These requirements recognize the pioneering models of voluntary sustainability reporting frameworks such as the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI); international guidelines that address elements of organizational sustainability, such as International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 26000, Guidance on Social Responsibility; and a wide range of other standards and guidelines that address specific elements of sustainability. It provides credit to companies adhering to these organizational sustainability frameworks and rewards best practices in a series of indicators that must be verified by authorized independent third-party verifiers, and certified to be included in the UL 880 organizational registry.
2.2 Developing requirements that address an organization’s impacts across multiple sustainability-related concepts is inherently complex. Building upon the century of rigor at Underwriters Laboratories in establishing standards for product safety, the UL-GreenBiz Group team set out to create a standard that is comprehensible, capable of being consistently applied, credible, measurable and relevant to companies and their stakeholders. The result is a standard containing comprehensive corporate sustainability requirements for manufacturing organizations covering five domain topics – governance for sustainability, environment, work force, customers and suppliers, and community engagement and human rights – four categories of indicators – prerequisite, core, leadership and innovation – that are organized into four types – inventories and baselines, policies and procedures, performance, and reporting. Combined, this matrix provides a comprehensive, consistent, yet flexible framework that is applicable across diverse manufacturing organizations while helping companies who become certified under these requirements to differentiate themselves from their peers.
2.3 While the UL 880 framework provides much-needed consistency in assessing sustainability efforts across manufacturing organizations, measuring sustainability performance is difficult. Measuring performance is challenging even in arenas outside sustainability, such as finance, where there is a well-developed history of metrics and measurement. The complexity increases when it comes to sustainability, where there is often an enormous gap in understanding how an organization’s business decisions and operations translate into positive or negative social and environmental impacts.
2.4 With this in mind, UL 880 is designed with a process of capturing performance data and incentivizing participating organizations to set targets and have their performance against those targets verified. In this manner, it is the intent of UL 880 to encourage organizations to develop performance data and reporting, such that over time these requirements will better enable organizations to link their organizational practices and performance to environmental, social, and financial objectives pertinent to not only their organization, but to broader objectives. In other words, UL 880 seeks to build a bridge between an organization’s immediate needs with the needs of future generations.