Strengthening The "E" In HREDD – Why the environmental dimension of sustainable supply chains matters

García, Bibiana; Carolin Grüning, Daniel Weiss, Katja Kriege 2022: Strengthening The "E" In HREDD. Why the environmental dimension of sustainable supply chains matters. Berlin: adelphi.

The overview of developments in the field of supply chain Human Rights and Environmental Due Diligence (HREDD) shows that there is a growing momentum for national and international legislative due diligence action. In most cases, legislation focuses on human rights aspects. At the same time, legislation on specific environmental aspects in the supply chain (e.g. on timber) is increasing in number and importance. Policy-makers also increasingly recognise the links and interdependencies between human rights and environmental issues in supply chains (e.g. the draft of EU Directive on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence, CSDD). Companies are also moving towards more environmentally friendly supply chains, with pioneers paving the way for others and a larger group being required to integrate environmental issues into their due diligence systems based on (upcoming) regulatory requirements.

However, to make true progress towards a holistic HREDD approach, these efforts must intensify and accelerate. While common reference points are central to the effective implementation of HREDD (e.g. recognised international standards), it is foremost time to move from a debate on appropriate standards to large scale implementation on the ground.

Drawing on existing literature and discussions, this paper aims to support the exchange within the G7 (and beyond) by providing an overview of the status quo of measures that encourage due diligence regarding environmental protection, including the link to supporting human rights, and options to advance the effectiveness of these measures.