Circular economy is the hottest topic in sustainability right now. So what is the circular economy?

Unlike the dominant linear economy of a ‘take, make, consume and bin’ the circular economy revolves around three principles:

Circularity is mostly touched on in conversations with nods of the heads agreeing that it is the right thing to do. Today, not enough businesses are embracing the circular economy.

The good news is there are businesses leading the way. Organisations like Lenovo computers, Volvo cars, Ikea and Adidas are leaving behind the destructive linear economy and embracing the circular economy to reduce consumption of raw materials, carbon emissions and reduce waste.

A faster transition requires a systematic shift in the way businesses think and design products following the three principles outlined above. It also requires a fundamental shift in the way individuals consume products and services to influence change. According to European Parliament every European consumes and average of 14 tonnes of raw materials per annum and produces 5 tonnes of waste.*


What is holding businesses back?

Businesses are held back from making the shift either because they don’t know where to begin or fear the short term costs to shift business operations and processes.

Instead, now is the time to think differently -  look to the long term savings for the business and of course the safety of the people and our planet.

Benefits of the circular economy

From the all important environmental perspective it reduces resource extraction, lowers levels of pollution and minimises wastage.

For the businesses embracing the circular economy they are experiencing numerous benefits such as:

However, achieving a circular economy requires collaborative efforts from governments, businesses, and individuals. A company can’t work on its own to achieve a circular economy. Achieving a successful transition to a circular economy requires collaborative efforts from governments, businesses and individuals. By considering each third –party partnership carefully and ensuring suppliers share the same sustainability goals they can work together to transition faster. That’s where your procurement team can play an influential role as they armed with the knowledge and tools to select suppliers that meet sustainability standards.  

Discover more about procurement best practice to free up precious time to focus on your strategic goals. Visit Procurement Best Practice 

Corporate environmental accountability has become crucial in recent years, as stakeholders evaluate how companies are addressing climate change impacts and emissions. A key resource in this effort is CDP (formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project), an international non-profit organisation that helps corporations create sustainability programs aimed at reducing emissions and pollution into our environment. Keep reading to learn more about the role CDP reporting can play in helping a business move towards greater sustainability!

What is CDP reporting and why it matters?

In today's world, environmental sustainability is a pressing concern for investors, companies, and the public. As climate change continues to affect people and the planet, stakeholders are increasingly interested in how companies are addressing the challenges posed by a changing environment. The "E" in environmental, social, and governance (ESG) reporting has gained significant attention, and CDP is helping addressing ‘E’nvironmental factors with its reporting framework. A Framework designed for companies to disclose their environmental impacts and efforts to reduce emissions, pollution, and other forms of environmental damage.

What is CDP reporting?

CDP reporting is a process through which companies score and share their environmental data. A broad range of stakeholders rely on CDP as a process for companies to report their environmental impacts and demonstrate they are managing the risks and opportunities associated with climate change, deforestation, and water security.

How is CDP data used?

A CDP score provides a quick snapshot of how environmentally well a company is doing. CDP data reveals which companies are better long-term investments and helps investors manage environmental risks within their portfolios while assessing their investments' carbon footprint. It's not just investors that value CDP reports. More and more companies are turning to environmental scoring to evaluate their own environmental impact and of the third parties they work with.

Exploring the Benefits of Environmental Reporting:

The benefits of environmental reporting extend beyond accountability to investors and clients. They include:

Looking Towards the Future with Environmental Reporting

There are many more advantages to gain. Transparency, standardisation and a culture of accountability create trust among investors, shareholders, and the public, contributing to a positive image for the business.

The additional advantages of reporting are significant when it comes to supply chain transparency. It helps identify supply chain risks, mitigate reputational risks and evaluate carbon-reduction performance compared to competitors – increasingly more important with Scope 3.

Ultimately by embracing greater accountability and transparency, companies become more attractive to sustainably-conscious stakeholders: investors, suppliers, customers, and employees.

Talk to Pulse Market about our ESG Passport designed to kickstart SMEs ESG journey.

Key Considerations for SMEs Competing in Tenders

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) account for 5.5 million businesses that drive innovation and job creation in the UK economy. But they also have a significant impact on supply chain carbon emissions, making them a target for accountability under Scope 3 regulation.

To address their own indirect carbon emissions, Tier 1 organisations are turning to their suppliers - the majority are SMEs - to account and report their carbon emissions. Consquently winning business in a net-zero emissions world presents challenges for smaller businesses, but it's not impossible to overcome, in fact it can present opportunities. In fact SMEs are getting higher up the prefered supplier list because they can demonstrate sustainability credentials unlike their larger competitors.

In this blog, we'll share 4 key considerations for SMEs and procurement professionals eager to bid for business and win by showcasing their sustainability efforts.

1 Understand Tender Requirements

The first step for SMEs competing for tenders in a net-zero world is to understand the tender requirements. Governments and large private sector organisations are increasingly prioritising sustainability and emissions reduction in their procurement processes. This means that companies completing an RFP should evidence a clear understanding of the tender requirements and how they align with sustainability goals.

2 Build a Sustainability Strategy

To compete effectively in a net-zero world, companies of all sizes should integrate sustainability into their corporate strategy and demonstrate how it aligns with their brand and cultural values. Begin by developing a clear plan with sustainability targets and a plan to achieve them. For those struggling with resource can work with industry associations and sustainability consultants who can help tailor the sustainability plan for the business and differentiate it from competitors. Another factor in the strategy should be to complete sustainability certifications or access partnerships with sustainability-focused organisations to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability.

3 Focus on Innovation

Innovation drives sustainability, and SMEs can leverage their agility and flexibility to develop and implement innovative sustainable solutions - faster than monolithic organisations. Developing products, services, and business models that prioritise sustainability can be a strong differentiator. SMEs can collaborate with your industry peers and suppliers to drive change or government bodies and universities to access resources for research and development.

4 Leverage Technology

Technology is critical for enabling sustainability. SMEs can leverage it to reduce their carbon footprint and compete for tenders with an element of carbon emission accounting. Adopting energy-efficient technologies, implementing smart building systems, or using data analytics to optimize energy consumption are examples. Highlight your switch to virtual meetings and remote work that reduces travel emissions while also consider renewable energy sources can power operations.

By understanding requirements, building a sustainability strategy, focusing on innovation, and leveraging technology, SMEs can compete effectively for net-zero tenders. SMEs can help contribute to the transition to a net-zero economy while driving innovation and job creation

In conclusion, SMEs face unique challenges in competing for tenders in a business world focussing on driving down Scope 3 emissions. By gaining a closer understanding of the tender requirements, integrating sustainability into your corporate strategy, focusing on innovation, and leveraging technology, you can position your organisation as leaders in sustainability and compete effectively for tenders.

With the right approach, SMEs can contribute to the global transition to a net-zero economy while also benefiting from faster growth by attracting new customers who admire businesses with strong sustainable credentials.

Takeaway Tip: Learn more about Scope 1, 2 and 3 in the Scope of Sustainability

How Pulse Market can help:

We’ll help you track and manage Scope 3 data, decarbonise your value chain, and develop a transition plan that balances reaching your net zero goals while remaining a profitable, successful business.

Book a demo to discover more about our Procurement or Sustainability Solutions.

Staying up to date with evolving ESG regulations is more important for businesses than ever before. In this article we explore an EU regulation coming into force in Autumn 2023. It is CBAM (Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism). Read on to understand what this could mean for your business and prepare for its implementation in October 2023. 

What is CBAM – Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism 

The EU and its 27 countries are working on a new common rules to lower EU’s carbon footprint and this has a knock-on effect across the globe for any industry or business trading with the EU. 

What is CBAM 

It is a key piece of EU’s ESG regulatory landscape. Carbon price on goods imported into the EU Aimed at eliminating carbon leakage. Carbon leakage occurs when companies relocate their production operations from a region with strict environmental regulations to a region with relaxed or non-existent rules. To combat this problem, the EU introduced the new regulation on carbon border adjustments, to ensure that companies that relocate to countries with lenient environmental policies pay a fair amount in carbon taxes. This legislation is set to reduce carbon leakage. 

It is set to come into force in October 2023 with the implementation of quarterly reporting moving towards a requirement for CBAM certification planned sometime after January 2026.  

How does it work? 

Importers in the EU must produce quarterly reports verifying GHG emissions calculations. And purchase, surrender and declare equivalent CBAM certificates.  

Who is affected? 

Those that are directly impacted include importers and exporters of CBAM goods. Those that are indirectly impacted are expected to be passed on through markets. 

What goods does CBAM apply to? 

Therefore, a broad number of sectors are impacted by CBAM. To begin with the following sectors are included: Aerospace, Automotive, Chemicals, Consumer, Energy, Engineering & Construction, Forest, Paper & Packaging, Manufacturing, Metals & Mining, Pharma & Life Science, Power & Utilities, Retail and Technology. 

It is expected that more plastic and chemical goods will be added in 2026.  

Ultimately this is an important step towards reducing Europe’s carbon footprint, however it is up to all countries around the globe to work together towards achieving greater environmental sustainability. We mustn't forget that what affects one nation affects us all – and only with stronger collaboration can we hope for a greener future. 

At Pulse we have a range of sustainability solutions for businesses of all shapes and sizes in the UK and EU. 

To help your business progress your sustainability journey download a copy of our new ebook: ESG Insight Guide

Attention sustainability consultants! Are you passionate about making a positive impact on businesses and the environment?

Join our discovery call with Gavin Tweedie Co-Founder of Net Zero Nation on 11 of May. It's an opportunity to share ideas with your peers and identify ways to engage SMES and maximise your impact on people and the planet.

smiling man in front of scottish loch
Gavin Tweedie

Together, we'll discuss principles and barriers, ignite passion and action, and explore sustainability reporting, supply chain management, and data gathering. We'll also delve into collaboration, SMEs vs. large enterprises, and best practices for growing your business.

Expect to gain insights into successes and trends, and connect with like-minded consultants. Let's reduce carbon footprints and accelerate clients' sustainability journey. We can do more together than apart. Join us now!

Who is event for

Sustainability consultants who are passionate about making a positive impact on businesses and the environment.

Expected Outcomes:

Event Details

📅 Date: 3pm on Thursday, 11 May 2023 on Teams.

Spaces are limited - so get your meeting link now by emailing

As concerns about climate change continue to grow and become more urgent, businesses around the world are looking for ways to reduce their impact on the planet. However, many companies are still overlooking the impact of their own supply chain on the environment, which is where Scope 3 emissions are under scrutiny. 

If you’re wondering what on earth are Scope 3 emissions – you’re not alone. Scope 3 emissions are generated from all the activities that occur outside a company’s direct control. They are associated with its operations, including its supply chain. In other words, it’s the carbon footprint generated by everything that happens before a product reaches your company’s front door. 

Why focus on Scope 3 now? 

It is tempting to focus solely on reducing direct emissions (Scope 1) and emissions from purchased energy (Scope 2). This is a short-term solution that will become a regulatory headache in the long term. And organisations are only beginning to realise this.  

Under growing external pressures Boards and the C-Suite are gradually pushing Scope 3 closer to the top of their agenda. They are almost all in agreement that addressing Scope 3 emissions is essential to make a real impact on climate change. Indirect emissions are often the largest source of a company’s carbon footprint, and must not be ignored if your company is to have a more sustainable future. Although in the current uncertain and volatile climate with the war in Ukraine, urgent supply chain shortages and rising inflation there is a real danger that rising carbon emissions slip back down the corporate agenda.  

Why track suppliers’ emissions? 

The key for businesses seeking to address Scope 3 emissions is understanding their own supply chain. However, you can only measure what you can see. With complex, global supply chains with multiple tiers of suppliers, it can be difficult to identify and track emissions.  

It may surprise you that collaborating with the competition in your industry could be the answer.  

When businesses come to together to support their suppliers, they can develop a transparent supply chain across the industry. The knock-on effect for an industry is to: 

Addressing your company’s Scope 3 emissions isn’t just good for the environment – it also benefits your business.  More efficient production processes lead to cost savings, and reducing exposure to political and climate-related risks. Plus, the added bonus of being universally recognised as a company that genuinely cares about the environment, actively taking steps to reduce your carbon footprint. There is nothing negative about good PR! 

Clearly, Scope 3 emissions matter, and they don’t have to be as confusing as they first appear. Pulse will assist your company to work closely with your suppliers and help to create a more sustainable future.  

Who doesn’t love teamwork aimed at saving the planet? 

Pulse has developed tools and technology to making it easier than ever to work with your suppliers to gain supply chain transparency. 

Book a demo today 

Read our intro to Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions

The Scope of Sustainability

The rising awareness of carbon emissions and the rising decarbonising regulation is helping the scope of sustainability rise to the top of the business agenda. However, organisations eager to play their part in decarbonisation are feeling overwhelmed. They are struggling to get their business heads around decarbonisation burying their head in the sand. Is your organisation lagging behind? A good place to start is by first exploring the world of greenhouse gas emissions.  Let’s get you started by discussing the three different categories of emissions: Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3. 

Scope 1 and Scope 2 are relatively simple as they are under the control of your organisation.  

Scope 1 emissions.  

These are the direct emissions from sources that are owned or controlled by the company. Think things like exhaust fumes from company vehicles or emissions from on-site boilers. These emissions are the easy targets of greenhouse gas reductions – they’re simple to identify and simple to control. 

Scope 2 emissions.  

Scope 2 are the indirect emissions from the generation of power purchased and consumed by your company. Emissions that are generated by someone else, like your power supplier, but are still indirectly linked to your company’s operations. It’s the carbon footprint equivalent of “but you touched it last”

Scope 3 emissions.  

Lastly, Scope 3 are all other indirect emissions that occur in your company’s operations and your suppliers, such as emissions from the production of purchased goods and services, their transportation, and the use of the company’s products by consumers. These emissions are trickier to identify and to control. Like an environmental hydra as soon as one is defeated another appears. Don’t worry, there are  ways to understand and calculation of Scope 3 emissions. However, the tools are still in their infancy and it is advisable to seek expert advice to gather data you can trust. 

By accurately identifying and measuring emissions in each scope, your company can set meaningful sustainability goals and develop effective action plans. The short term challenges are outweighed by the long term benefits of improving your company’s reputation, enhancing brand loyalty and gaining sustainability credentials. 

That’s the brief introduction to Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3 emissions. If you’re ever feeling overwhelmed by all the potential sources of greenhouse gas emissions, just remember – every little step counts. The sooner you start your decarbonising journey the sooner the people and the planet will thank you.  

At Pulse our goal is to help responsible organisations like yours understand your impact on the planet and ease the transition to ESG. Read more at ESG for Business

Businesses that ignore ESG will not survive in the next decade.

This may sound like an unpopular opinion but read on to discover why ESG matters and the benefits of mastering ESG integration into your business.  

In recent years, there has been a growing recognition among organisations of the importance of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors in their operations and their ability to thrive in the next decade. Many other businesses are now catching up as they understand the long-term benefits. 

Why integrate ESG?

Companies that incorporate ESG considerations into their strategies and operations are better positioned to manage risk, build resilience, and create long-term value for stakeholders. 

This theme was unanimously supported at our recent ESG event and is summed up in the words of Andrew Morrison, Director, AM Bid:  

“It is of fundamental importance, ESG for businesses, whether large businesses or small businesses, key takeaway is in 10 years' time, you're not going to have a business if you've not given thought to that now”.

Andrew Morrison, Director, AM Bid 

What’s driving ESG integration? 

The importance of ESG integration has been driven forward with the introduction of stricter regulations requiring companies to report on their ESG impact. For instance, European Union Regulation (SECR, CSRD, NFRD, TCFD, SEC, ISSB). Similar regulations are being introduced in other parts of the world, including the United States and Asia. This is having a knock-on effect along the global supply chain as businesses select who to work with based on ESG criteria not just pricing.  

How can companies assess ESG performance? 

To help companies assess their ESG performance and identify areas for improvement, ESG Maturity Assessments have emerged as a useful tool. A self-assessment process, the ESG Maturity Assessment helps companies estimate their ESG impact, identify areas of strength and weakness, and develop a plan to improve their sustainability performance.  

The process involves evaluating the company's carbon emissions, waste, pollution, and human rights performance, among other factors. 

For larger companies, external ESG Maturity Assessments and Scoring have become normal business practice. ESG Ratings agencies and consultants can help with assessments, scoring, and the creation of a plan to improve a company's ESG impact. Every company’s ESG Control Framework should include: 

An ESG Maturity Assessment covers each of these elements of the Control Framework to measure its effectiveness, robustness, and goals. The assessment evaluates the sustainability targets within the overall business strategy, the quality of the internal control framework, the effectiveness of ESG Risk Register management, the quality of ESG management reporting, and the quality and transparency of ESG communications and internal reporting. 

How to gain a competitive advantage with ESG? 

Companies that adopt an ESG strategy early will gain a competitive advantage. Carrying out honest self-assessments of their ESG strengths and weaknesses is important to put an effective plan into action. While some ESG impacts may be complex and difficult to measure, acting early and starting the journey sooner rather than later will put companies on the path to a successful, sustainable future. 

In conclusion, ESG is an important aspect of modern business practice. Companies that incorporate ESG considerations into their strategies and operations are better positioned to manage risk, build resilience, and create long-term value for stakeholders.  

Join our ESG community today!  

For consultants visit  

For business visit 

Pulse Market is proud to sponsor the Causeway Exchange Network ESG business seminar. We'll be joined by event supporters Enterprise Ireland on Friday, 25 of November, in Edinburgh, at the stunning Waldorf Astoria.

As you know here at Pulse Market we love partnering with organisations that champion SMEs and make doing business simpler. That's why we're delighted to share this exciting news that we're sponsoring Causeway Exchange's next business seminar: 'ESG and Vendor Risk Management - how your business can gain competitive advantage'.

Buy your tickets today from Causeway Exchange

About the seminar

Pulse Market, Causeway Exchange and Enterprise Ireland are bringing experts from Scottish and Irish blue-chip businesses, procurement bid teams and ESG/Net Zero experts together to discuss the biggest challenges businesses face in relation to ESG and suppliers as we face a recession.

The panel of experts will present best practice in supplier management and show how these strategies can be implemented in your business so as to attain your ESG goals.

Why the theme ESG and supplier management?
Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) rules, alignment and enhancements have been at the heart of many business requirements in the recent years. None more so than with the rise of awareness following COP26 in Glasgow in 2021. Businesses are now looking for their suppliers to act, raise their game, and be accountable/aligned with their vision. 

Whilst ESG has been a key business issue for some time, a greater need has arisen to have total accountability for you suppliers and supply chain. Recent events such as the Russian invasion on Ukraine, and the sanctions imposed on Russia, have ignited a demand for suppliers to be fully accountable and understand where they are buying their goods and services.

Suppliers having total clarity (look-through) of their suppliers, with due diligence completed, validation of infosec, and accreditation across ISO, ESG are the businesses staying ahead of the pack and winning business. Discover how your business can gain the competitive edge by coming along to the Causeway Exchange business seminar.

Meet the Panel

Host: Russell Dalgleish, serial entrepreneur and global networker 
Tabitha Jayne, Director and Interim CEO for Net Zero Nation
Andrew Morrison, Founder and Director of AM Bid
Joanne Murphy, MBA, MCBI , COO of Chartered Institute of Banking 
Richard Carr, Group Environment Director, Webhelp Enterprise
Paul Murphy Solutions lead at Climeaction
Neil Stevenson MCIPS Stevenson, Procurement & Vendor Management, Aegon Asset Management

Buy your tickets today from Causeway Exchange

(Tickets £35 for Causeway Exchange Members £50 for non members)

Follow our socials to hear more from the panel experts and be the first to hear the exciting updates about this event.

We are delighted to be hosting our first webinar with a strong panel of speakers from the greener business world and 4th sector. We have chosen to host the 'Invest in our Planet' webinar on Friday, 22 of April to coincide with Earth Day.

Come along to the webinar for a lively and informative discussion. Discover practical steps you and your organisation can take to help your people and the planet.

Register for Invest in Our Planet Webinar

We'd like you to get to know our speakers so here are some short introductions so you can get to know them a little bit better.

man wearing white shirt in front of Scottish landscape
Gavin Tweedie

Gavin Tweedie

Gavin Tweedie is the co-founder and chairman of the social enterprise Net Zero Nation Ltd and Scottish Net Zero community which he helped establish in January 2021 with the Scottish Business Network and James Napier at CBN Expert. The organisation has grown to over 1000 members and mobilised over £1bn in annual revenues to sign up to the UN Race to Zero.

Discover more about Net Zero Nation

Ellie Marshall

Ellie Marshall

Ellie Marshall's role at award-winning Scottish solutions business Eco involves driving forward new ideas, bringing people together and delivering results which enable the firm to lead where others follow. As Executive Assistant to Managing Director and founder Eddie Black, she plays a central role in the adoption and development of innovations including the launch of EcoGoZero, the company's portfolio of net zero products.

Discover more about Eco

David Reid

David Reid

Fuel Change is a social-enterprise movement that taps into the potential of Scotland's youth to solve the decarbonisation challenges faced by industries worldwide.

Discover more about Fuel Change

Aimee Doole

Aimee Doole

Aimee Doole is passionate about collaborating with businesses on their Net Zero journey and showcasing the role of culture and technology in creating a mindset where businesses can drive positive change - prioritising their people, the planet and profit with no trade off. Aimee's background is in strategy, marketing and communications and she has had over 10 years in the strategic brand development space primarily in the technical and engineering world. Her energy and enthusiasm has allowed brands to reach new heights across a wide variety of industries and gain national recognition and multiple awards. An accredited Workplace Innovation Practitioner, Aimee has also led many cultural and people engagement initiatives to support business growth and is regularly asked to speak at conferences both in the UK and internationally.  

Discover more about Booth Welsh

black and white headshot of smiling man in a business suit
David McDonald

David McDonald

David qualified as a management accountant with Scottish Equitable and is a seasoned Finance and Operations Director with board level experience in several sectors. As Director of Sustainable Development at UNITE Group plc, he was responsible for leading the strategic response to the emerging low carbon landscape within property development and operations. David has been involved in policy work, and helped to develop and present the first renewables route map to HM Treasury and to a parliamentary committee in 2001. He is an expert in capital investment appraisal for renewable energy and infrastructure assets.

John Dowdall

John Dowdall

From Dublin, Ireland, John has worked in the funds industry for more than 25 years. In his early working life this was in financial services firms in the newly growing International Financial Services Centre in Dublin, with firms like Fortis (now BNP Paribas) Banque International a Luxembourg (now RBC) & Investors Bank & Trust (now State Street).
After that John Moved into the data and regtech market with SIX Financial & MoneyMate , where he created the regtech firm Silverfinch.

Discover more about Pulse Market

We'd love you to join us for the Invest in Our Planet webinar.

You can find out more about the Earth Day webinar here

You can register here

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