Company name: SussednAble Ltd
Company number: 06471486
VAT registration number: GB 990 2555 04
Registered office: 18 West Street, Banwell, Avon, BS29 6DA, United Kingdom
Fax number: +44 (0)1422 705507
Email: use form via 'contact us' at the bottom of any page.
SussednAble.com uses the Make Hay green hosting service powered by 100% wind energy.
No person or organisation is able to claim truthfully that any product or service is sustainable. There are no data available that can substantiate such a claim. We live in a world of interconnected systems and that results in harmful impacts in one system neutralising or reversing positive performance in another system. Climate change is a prime example of this. Science has shown us that global society is close to a tipping point, a point at which irreversible climate changes will mean that not even the greenest product or service can support current lifestyles indefinitely. For example, a zero carbon development in the UK will never be sustainable whilst the carbon emissions in other countries are growing without effective controls.
Looking beyond climate change, a recent United Nations report states that global resource extraction could triple by 2050 compared to 2000 even if industrialised countries contain resource utilisation at 2000 levels whilst the rest of the world catches up. The report goes on to state "This scenario assumes no major system innovation or switch to renewable energy, and probably represents an unsustainable future in terms of both resource use and emissions, exceeding all measures of available resources and assessments of limits to the capacity to absorb impacts." (Decoupling natural resource use and environmental impacts from economic growth, UNEP, 2011, pages 28 & 29). The report explores other scenarios that would reduce global resource extraction and concludes that "all scenarios demonstrate that without significant improvements in resource productivity, it will not be possible to meet the needs of nine billion people (including the eradication of poverty) by 2050" page 32. In other words, even politically unacceptable contractions in global resource use may not be enough to achieve sustainability.
Whilst even the most benign product or service can be unsustainable given the above global context, the ethos of SussednAble is that doing something positive is better than doing nothing. It is certainly a lot better than doing something harmful and may buy a little more time whilst others understand the impacts of what they do, and then act to reduce those impacts. The more that people and organisations buy time through their benign actions, the better it will be for everyone now and in the future.
SussednAble Limited's main mission is to help people and organisations to buy time by supporting and disseminating genuinely beneficial products and services in a way that is accessible to those who are looking for such information e.g. trying to find a benign building product or material for a particular application. SussednAble.com classifies such more sustainable products or materials as "sussed in".
The term 'more sustainable' is used by SussednAble to describe products or services that are better than the norm for the planet at the same time as being better for people and pockets, profit or prosperity. A product that is good for the planet but is more dangerous to use would not therefore be regarded as more sustainable. However, a product that is more expensive than the norm to buy, but reduces overall costs could be classified as more sustainable. For example, a more sustainable insulation product might cost more than another but it might reduce the initial cost of a building by eliminating the need for a heating installation or at least reducing the heating installation's capacity. The product could also be described as more sustainable if its use means that long term ('whole life') running costs are less than would be the case for a less sustainable product and it is more safe to use and/or live with.
The relativity embedded in the term 'more sustainable' suggests that comparison of data is required. Life cycle assessment tools may be used to enable meaningful comparisons to be made between different products fulfillng the same function. However, such tools may still be vulnerable to subjectivity. In the case of construction products, the BRE's work on Ecopoints is one way to ascertain environmental credentials along with Green Guides to materials, Greenspec and software tools such as Envest II. All of these assessment processes and tools have their merits in attempting to prove greenness. However, there can be significant costs involved for manufacturers and suppliers. Furthermore, the assessment processes and tools barely tackle the people and pocket/profit aspects of sustainable development and they often seem to rely on the judgement of experts rather than a wider range of stakeholders. Relying on experts is commendable in many ways but the process can lack transparency and is also open to groupthink, a not uncommon phenomenon amongst professionals engaging in environmental work (e.g. the widespread misuse of the word 'sustainable' amongst many professionals).
Rather than relying on quantitative data, and a small group of 'experts' with similar backgrounds, to asses whether or not a product is more sustainable than the norm, SussednAble facilitates all of its users in sussing products and services in or out. This approach is, of course, open to subjectivity both on the part of organisations promoting products or services and on the part of those who will assess the promoter's claims. However, through providing opportunities for comments, reviews and ratings, SussednAble promotes open debate about claims and counterclaims so that everyone using SussednAble can reach their own conclusions.
A service provider might be more sustainable than its rivals if, for example, it has eliminated domestic business travel by air. However, even in these days when air travel is a target for much criticism because of its contribution to climate change and its depletion of scarce resources, there are still environmental consultants (of all people), jetting to meetings around the UK. That leads to another aspect of SussednAble Limited's mission: to expose (suss out) hypocrisy and greenwash (misleading claims about the environmental impacts/positive attributes of a product or service).