The Importance of SC&E Readiness for the Public Sector

Leveraging digital platforms for sustainability reporting


With a growing emphasis in our society on sustainability, climate & equity (SC&E) issues, many organizations are beginning to transform the way they capture, manage, and report SC&E-related data and are considering how to prepare for meeting expectations for disclosure, regulation, and action.

As governmental entities identify SC&E issues that are material to their constituencies and stakeholders, the public sector has an opportunity to drive strategies that manage SC&E performance and utilize new technologies to organize data and better prepare for future regulations and reporting requirements—all while setting up the organization to meet the growing demands for SC&E transparency.

Public sector agencies, states, and municipalities should not wait to prioritize their SC&E strategy. While the topics under the umbrella of SC&E may seem too broad to tackle or like an idea that only exists somewhere out there in the ether, its relevancy is growing—and growing more by the day. But aside from its increasing relevance, there are multiple reasons why now is the right time to begin the SC&E transformation journey.


SC&E for public sector entities

For public sector organizations, the SC&E journey has its own complexities and hurdles due to factors such as the size of many organizations, additional regulations and complexities, and difficulty with the speed of transformation initiatives. While many private sector organizations have started to prepare and gather experience within the SC&E space, some public agencies are still working to gain momentum. The public sector can use lessons learned from what stakeholders are asking the private sector to determine items like:

  • Who owns sustainability reporting?
  • How can technology be leveraged to gather data more efficiently without sacrificing governance, controls, and oversight?
  • With the abundance of data conversion and manipulation, how can strong preventative and detective controls be designed and implemented?

To understand what government organizations should be considering or how they can begin the SC&E preparedness journey, let’s look at some of the current regulations and their impact on the public sector now and long term.

Future of Work: Ways of working in uncertain times


The Justice40 Equity Reporting requirements is the Federal Government’s goal that 40 percent of the overall benefits of certain Federal investments flow to systemically disadvantaged communities that are marginalized, underserved, and overburdened by pollution.

Annual climate adaptation sustainability plans

This includes Federal Progress, Plans, and Performance and the Office of the Federal Chief Sustainability Officer and encompasses the executive order on catalyzing American clean energy industries and jobs through the Federal sustainability plan.

The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System

(STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.



What can public sector entities do to prepare?

Understanding the importance of SC&E and the broad impacts, requirements, and regulations it will have on the public sector may seem like it paints the picture of an all-too-complex undertaking. How do organizations even begin to tackle this? However, it doesn’t have to be complicated. There are some practical steps the public sector can take to help set up for success even as the SC&E landscape continues to evolve and expand.

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