Futurum Global Survey Shows Increasing Business Focus on Energy Efficiency and Other Environmental Sustainability Initiatives

AUSTIN, Texas, February 6, 2023–Futurum Research, an industry research, advisory, consulting, and media company focused on analyzing emerging and market-disrupting technologies, has published the latest edition of its global environmental sustainability index. The report revealed that while energy efficiency and sustainability remain top business priorities, organizations are shifting their focus from modifying operational processes to achieving a greater balance by leveraging technology-driven solutions.

Futurum Research, which is part of The Futurum Group family of companies, produces the quarter-over-quarter review of corporate progress on environmental sustainability projects. The survey also gauges the sentiment of business decision-makers involved in sustainability projects and provides an indicator on expectations and goals for the future.

The second release of the report, developed in collaboration with Honeywell, surveyed more than 750 senior business professionals at large organizations worldwide and across all industry sectors. This latest survey for the first quarter of 2023 revealed that over the next 12 months, organizations reported they are making sustainability strategy changes that would increase acquisitions of more efficient or sustainable technology.

“While we reported last quarter that process-driven change was a favored strategy, we’re now projecting an increased budget spend on technology and upgrades,” said Daniel Newman, principal analyst and founding partner at Futurum Research. “Despite macroeconomic global concerns about an economic recession, geopolitical instability, and widely reported layoffs in the tech industry, companies remain committed to investing in effective technology solutions that can achieve environmental sustainability objectives and help contribute to greatly reducing their carbon footprint to minimize or eliminate business and consumer contributors to climate change.”

The environmental sustainability index focuses on four main approaches to change: energy efficiency, emission reduction, pollution prevention, and recycling. Among some of the key findings:

  • Nearly 50% of organizations say they have been extremely successful with their environmental sustainability goals over the past 12 months, especially with recycling programs. The Asia Pacific region leads in energy efficiency, while EMEA and Latin America reported positive achievements with emission reduction programs.
  • Over the next six months, corporate leaders identified sustainably goals (71%), digital transformation (56%), and market growth (47%) as the top three business initiatives. Interestingly, initiatives that dropped in priority from the prior quarterly survey were financial performance (from 62% to 46%) and workforce/talent development (from 46% to 37%).
  • In addition to focusing on a more balanced approach leveraging process change and new technology, half of all organizations surveyed said they plan to increase spending by more than 20% on emissions reduction over the next 12 months.

“Data from the survey is compelling as it shows very high levels of optimism that organizations expect to achieve their environmental goals set for the next 12 months,” Newman said. “And for the longer term, out to the year 2030, more than 40% of organizations are projecting success while the very small level of previously reported pessimism is diminishing.”

The data-driven quarterly sustainability index is conducted as a double-blind survey of business professionals and is designed to measure the corporate pace of implementation of new processes and technologies aimed at increasing environmental sustainability and mitigating climate change.

“The prior quarterly study cited lingering concerns about the global pandemic, but those issues have waned,” said Shelly Kramer, principal analyst and founding partner at Futurum Research. “Now economic concerns are in the spotlight, but the responses from business leaders and sustainability program managers clearly show a need to make greater investment in upgrades and new technology.”