- Report unveiled during 78th UN General Assembly
Talawakelle Tea Estates (TTE PLC), a Hayleys Plantations company, has earned prestigious recognition as the sole representative from Sri Lanka to be featured in the United Nations Global Compact-Accenture Global Private Sector SDG Stocktake Report 2023.
The report, unveiled during the 78th UN General Assembly, acknowledges exemplary contributions to sustainable growth made by the private sector at the midway point toward achieving the 2030 Agenda for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This highlights Sri Lanka’s sustainable practices on the world stage, particularly in light of the report’s observation that the world is currently off track to meet its goals.
The report commended TTE PLC’s multifaceted efforts, stating that they exemplified environmental stewardship and made significant contributions to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It also highlighted the fact that TTE’s targets were verified by the Science Based Targets Initiative – the first Sri Lankan company to do so.
TTE PLC has committed to a Net-Zero future by 2050, pledging to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 50% and has implemented multiple measures across their operations. One noteworthy initiative involves converting all diesel boilers to biomass boilers, which complements clean energy generation from mini-hydro and solar plants. This has meant that TTE has generated clean energy which is 36% in excess of their usage.
The report also highlighted TTE PLC’s innovative Biochar technology, which captures and stores carbon dioxide in the soil (carbon sequestration), and its Ecosystem Restoration initiatives, which mitigate their environmental impact.
In light of this inclusion, Hayleys Plantation Managing Director Dr. Roshan Rajadurai stated, “This recognition demonstrates the team’s genuine embodiment of holistic sustainability in every aspect of their operations. Being a Participant to the United Nations Global Compact, an initiative that supports responsible business practices, and guided by the Hayleys Lifecode ESG Roadmap to 2030, reaffirms our dedication to sustainable business practices and our commitment to achieving the SDGs.
“The private sector has made commendable strides in driving economic growth and employment, but there is still much work to be done. I’m confident that the passionate teams within our Hayleys Plantations companies will continue to promote recognition of Ceylon Tea and support Sri Lanka’s sustainable sourcing image by actioning their commitments.”
Regarding their achievement, TTE PLC Director / CEO Senaka Alawattegama said, “Our inclusion in this report is not just an accolade but a call to action. As business leaders, we must refocus our efforts and follow through on our commitments to address the challenges presented. Talawakelle Tea Estates is aligned with the SDGs, committed to leading from the front and working harder to ensure a more sustainable future.”
The United Nations Global Compact-Accenture Global Private Sector SDG Stocktake Report 2023 sheds light on the vital intersection between corporate actions and sustainable development. It underscores the importance of the private sector’s role in sustainable development and calls for a renewed commitment to the SDGs. While many business leaders believe they are contributing enough, the report emphasises the need for greater engagement, not only within businesses but across industries and with governments as well.