Integral Logistics Management — Operations Management and Supply Chain Management Within and Across Companies

3.3 Sustainable Supply Chains

Intended learning outcomes: Explain the changing concept of sustainability with reference to the triple bottom line. Disclose economic opportunities for social commitment and for environmental commitment. Describe energy management concepts and measures for improved environmental performance. Produce an overview on the measurement of the environmental performance. Present social and environmental dimensions in industrial practice.


In the second half of the twentieth century, business decisions made by the strongly growing, changing, and developing industries did not take environmental aspects into great consideration. Legislation and the needs and requirements of direct stakeholders were taken into account, but the interest of the public and society carried less weight if it did not affect the competitiveness or profitability of the business. Supply chains grew with target areas such as costs, quality, delivery, and later flexibility as the main drivers. This development had a major impact on the carbon footprint distribution of today’s industry sectors. Figure 3.3.0.1 shows the economic sectors and their recent specific carbon footprint. Manufacturing and transport are responsible for more than half of the global COemissions.

As supply chains consist of networks of actors and value-adding activities, supply chain management represents an important management perspective to support sustainable development.

Fig. 3.3.0.1        Shares of global CO2 emissions in 2005 by sector (total direct and indirect CO2 emissions: 21 Gt CO2). (Source [IEA08]).

Sustainability and sustainable development can be defined as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (see [UN87], also known as the Brundtland Report).

Section 3.3.1 discusses the historical development of the concept of sustaina­bility as seen from the viewpoint of industry. Sections 3.3.2 and 3.3.3 present the changing business conditions and the emerging economic drivers that foster social and environmental commitment. Section 3.3.4 gives examples of possible improvements in industry.


Course section 3.3: Subsections and their intended learning outcomes

  • 3.3 Sustainable Supply Chains

    Intended learning outcomes: Explain the changing concept of sustainability with reference to the triple bottom line. Disclose economic opportunities for social commitment and for environmental commitment. Describe energy management concepts and measures for improved environmental performance. Produce an overview on the measurement of the environmental performance. Present social and environmental dimensions in industrial practice.

  • 3.3.1 The Changing Concept of Sustainability with Reference to the Triple Bottom Line (TBL)

    Intended learning outcomes: Produce an overview on the concept of the triple bottom line. Present the paradigm change that correlates to the evolution of sustainability aspects and their interaction.

  • 3.3.2 Economic Opportunities for Social Commitment of Sustainable Supply Chains

    Intended learning outcomes: Disclose the term “double bottom line”. Produce an overview on ethical standards, or code of conduct (CoC). Differentiate between groups of company-internal ethical standards and groups of company-external ethical standards. Present the supplier code of conduct (SCoC) and the certificate of compliance.

  • 3.3.3 Economic Opportunities for Environmental Commitment of Sustainable Supply Chains

    Intended learning outcomes: Produce an overview on energy-intensive industries. Disclose examples of using alternative fuels and raw materials in order to decrease the carbon footprint and the amount of fossil fuels required in the cement industry. Differentiate between opportunities and threats favoring proactive and reactive environmental involvement.



Course 3: Sections and their intended learning outcomes

  • Course 3 – Supply Chain Design: Location Planning and Sustainability

    Intended learning outcomes: Produce design options for global production, distribution, service, and transportation networks. Describe location selection / configuration for a production network using qualitative / quantitative methods. Explain the concept of sustainability with reference to the triple bottom line. Disclose economic opportunities for social and environmental commitment as well as energy management concepts.

  • 3.1 Design Options for Integrated Production, Distribution, Service, and Transportation Networks

    Intended learning outcomes: Explain design options for global production networks, distribution networks, service networks, and transportation networks. Describe the network structure for decentralized distribution, and design options for retail networks. Disclose the integration of the portfolios.

  • 3.2 Location Selection and Location Configuration

    Intended learning outcomes: Differentiate between location selection and location configuration. Explain location selection using qualitative methods and factor rating. Describe location selection and location configuration with linear programming.

  • 3.3 Sustainable Supply Chains

    Intended learning outcomes: Explain the changing concept of sustainability with reference to the triple bottom line. Disclose economic opportunities for social commitment and for environmental commitment. Describe energy management concepts and measures for improved environmental performance. Produce an overview on the measurement of the environmental performance. Present social and environmental dimensions in industrial practice.


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