1. bookVolume 7 (2015): Issue 1 (June 2015)
Journal Details
First Published
19 Mar 2012
Publication timeframe
1 time per year
access type Open Access

Staircase To Sustainable Development

Published Online: 06 Jan 2016
Page range: 53 - 70
Journal Details
First Published
19 Mar 2012
Publication timeframe
1 time per year

The aim of this article to provide a theoretical framework on the concepts of Sustainable Development and the process that companies need to follow in order to ensure the future sustainability of business operations. Various secondary sources and previous literature was reviewed to clearly identify why companies are finding it difficult to conduct their business operations in a sustainable manner. Stricter legislation and regulations, increased competition, depletion of natural resources and market pressures have placed organisations under increased pressure to improve environmental performance and achieve eco-efficiency. This paper provides comprehensive overview of how companies can achieve the ‘Triple bottom line’ by committing to continuous improvement and adhering to the regulations stipulated according to the International Standards of Organisations (ISO14001).


[1] Abdel-Kader G.M. (2011) - Review of Management Accounting Research. United Kingdom. Palgrave Macmillan (63-65).Search in Google Scholar

[2] Ahmad S., Saha P.K., Abbasi A., Khan M. 2009 - Environmental Management Systems and Sustainability: Integrating Sustainability in Environmental Management Systems. Master thesis, School of Engineering, Blekinge. Institute of Technology: Karlskrona, Sweden.Search in Google Scholar

[3] Albelda E. (2011) - The role of management accounting practices as facilitators of the environmental management: Evidence from EMAS organisations. Sustainability Accounting, Management and Policy Journal (online), 2(1):76-100, http://www.emeraldinsight.com/journal.htm (accessed 9 June 2014).Search in Google Scholar

[4] Ambe M.C. (2007) - Environmental Management Accounting in South Africa. Status, challenges and implementation framework. D. Tech. Tshwane University of Technology.Search in Google Scholar

[5] Bennett M. Schaltegger S., Zvezdov D. (2013) - Exploring Corporate Practices in Management Accounting for Sustainability (online), 1-56, http://www.icaew.com/academic (accessed 15 March 2014).Search in Google Scholar

[6] Bennett M., Rikhardsson P., Schaltegger S. (2003) - Adopting environmental management accounting: EMA as a value-adding activity [in] Environmental Management Accounting-Purpose and Progress. Springer, 1-14.Search in Google Scholar

[7] Bennett M., Schaltegger S., Zvezdov D. (2011) - Environmental management accounting. Review of Management Accounting Research, S: 53-84.Search in Google Scholar

[8] Bras B., Realff M., Carmichael C. (2004) - Integrated Environment and Economic Performance Assessment for Strategic Planning and Policy Analysis in Paper Manufacturing. CPBIS project – B-4: 5-7, final project report to CPBIS.Search in Google Scholar

[9] Brent A.C., Premraj S. (2007) - Environmental management systems in the automotive supply chain in South Africa: A pilot study. South African Journal of Industrial Engineering, 18(2):21-34.Search in Google Scholar

[10] Burritt R.L., Hahn T., Schaltegger S. (2002) - Towards a comprehensive framework for environmental management accounting - Links between business actors and environmental management accounting tools. Australian Accounting Review, 12 (27): 39-50.Search in Google Scholar

[11] Christmann P. (2000) - Effects of “best practices” of environmental management on cost advantage: The role of complementary assets. Academy of Management journal, 43 (4): 663-680.Search in Google Scholar

[12] Darnall N., Henriques I., Sadorsky P. (2008) - Do environmental management systems improve business performance in an international setting? Journal of International Management 14:364-376. http://www.sciencedirect.com (accessed 13 February 2014).Search in Google Scholar

[13] De Beer P., Friend F. (2006) - Environmental accounting: a management tool for enhancing corporate environmental and economic performance. Ecological Economics, 58 (3): 548-560.Search in Google Scholar

[14] Environmental Strategies (online), 2013. http://www.unido.org/en/what-we-do/environment (accessed 18 March 2014).Search in Google Scholar

[15] Ferenhof H.A., Vignochi L., Selig P.M., Lezana, A.G.R., Campos L.M.S. (2014) - Environmental management systems in small and medium-sized enterprises: an analysis and systematic review. Journal of Cleaner Production (online), 74:44-53. (accessed 10 May 2014) http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jclepro.Search in Google Scholar

[16] Ferenhof H.A., Vignochi L., Selig P.M., Lezana A.G.R., Campos L.M.S. (2014) - Environmental management systems in small and medium-sized enterprises: an analysis and systematic review. Journal of Cleaner Production (online), 74:44-53 (accessed 10 May 2014). http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jcleproSearch in Google Scholar

[17] Fore S., Mbohwa G.T. (2010) - Cleaner production for environmental conscious manufacturing in the foundry industry. Journal of Engineering Design Technology (online), 8(3):314-333. (Accessed 21 June 2013). http://dutlib.dut.ac.za:2057/docview/1012253156Search in Google Scholar

[18] Godschalk S. (2008) - Does Corporate Environmental Accounting Make Business Sense. Eco-efficiency in Industry and Science. 24: 249-265.Search in Google Scholar

[19] Henriques I., Sadorsky P. (2007) - Environmental Technical and Administrative Innovations in the Canadian Manufacturing Industry. Business strategy and the environment (online), 16:119-132. (accessed 10 July 2013). http://www.interscience.wiley.comSearch in Google Scholar

[20] Holt A. (2009) - Environmental management accounting (EMA): empirical evidence from the UK manufacturing sector [in] Management Accounting Research Group (MARG) Conference: Innovation and Sustainability in Management Accounting (online) (accessed 13 March 2014). http://www2.lse.ac.uk/accounting/newsSearch in Google Scholar

[21] Hyrslova’ J., Vagner M., Palasek J. (2011) - Material Flow Cost Accounting (MFCA) - Tool For The Optimization of Corporate Production Processes. Business, Management and Education 9(1): 5-18.Search in Google Scholar

[22] Introducing Environmental Management Accounting at Enterprise level (2001) - Methodology and case studies from Central and Eastern Europe. United Nations Industrial Development Organisation.Search in Google Scholar

[23] Jalaludin D., Sulaiman M., Ahmad N.N.N. (2011) - Understanding environmental management accounting (EMA) adoption: a new institutional sociology perspective (online), 7(4):540-557. http://www.emeraldinsight.com (accessed 13 March 2014).Search in Google Scholar

[24] Jasch C. (2003) - The use of Environmental Management Accounting (EMA) for identifying environmental costs. Journal of Cleaner Production, 11 (6): 667-676.Search in Google Scholar

[25] Jasch C., Schnitzer H. (2002) - Environmental Management Accounting. How to profit from environmental protection. EMA- environmental management accounting pilot testing.Search in Google Scholar

[26] Khalid F.M., Lord B., Dixon R. (2012) - Environmental management accounting implementation in environmentally sensitive industries in Malaysia. 6th NZ Management Accounting Conference. University of Canterbury, New Zealand.Search in Google Scholar

[27] Lakhani M. (2007) - The need for Clean Production and Product Re-design. Journal of Cleaner Production, 15 (13): 1391-1394.Search in Google Scholar

[28] Lambert S.C., Carter A.J., Burritt R.L. (2012) - Recognising commitment to sustainability through the Business Model. Centre for Accounting, Governance and Sustainability. University of South Australia.Search in Google Scholar

[29] Li X. (2004) - Theory and practice of environmental management accounting: experience of implementation in China. International Journal of Technology Management and Sustainable Development, 3(1):47-57.Search in Google Scholar

[30] Mohr-Swart M. (2008) - An Environmental Management Accounting Model for the South African Mining Industry. Doctor of Technology in the Department of Environmental, Water and Earth Sciences, Tshwane University of Technology.Search in Google Scholar

[31] Olson O., Jonall P. (2008) - Environmental Management Accounting (EMA), Management Accounting including Environmental Management – a literature review.Search in Google Scholar

[32] Orsato R.J. (2006) - Competitive Environmental Strategies: When Does It Pay To Be Green? California Management Review (online), 48(2):127-133. http://dutsummon.com (accessed 12 May 2014).Search in Google Scholar

[33] Qian W., Burritt R. (2008) - The Development of Environmental Management Accounting: An Institutional View [in] Schaltegger S., Bennett M., Burritt R., Jasch C. eds. Environmental Management Accounting for Cleaner Production. Springer Netherlands, 233-248. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-8913-8_12 (Accessed 19 October 2013).Search in Google Scholar

[34] Qian W., Burritt R., Monroe G. (2011) - Environmental management accounting in local government: A case of waste management. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, 24 (1): 93-128.Search in Google Scholar

[35] Radonjič G., Tominc P. (2007) - The role of environmental management system on introduction of new technologies in the metal and chemical/paper/plastics industries. Journal of Cleaner Production, 15 (15): 1482-1493.Search in Google Scholar

[36] Resource Efficient and Cleaner Production (2013). (online) http://www.unido.org/en/what-we-do/environmental/resource-efficient (accessed 18 March 2014).Search in Google Scholar

[37] Scavone G.M. (2006) - Challenges in internal environmental management reporting in Argentina. Journal of Cleaner Production (online), 14:1276-1285. (accessed 23 October 2013) http://www.sciencedirect.com.Search in Google Scholar

[38] Schaltegger S., Bennett M., Burritt R.L., Jasch C. (2010) - Eco-efficiency in industry and science. Environmental Management Accounting for Cleaner Production. 5th edition. Springer Science and Business Media. UK.Search in Google Scholar

[39] Schaltegger S., Gibassier D., Zvezdov D. (2011) - Environmental Management Accounting. A Bibliometric Literature Review. Centre for Sustainability Management.Search in Google Scholar

[40] Sinclair-Desgagne B. (2004) - Corporate Strategies for Managing Environmental Risk. The International Library of Environmental Economics and Policy xx:1-7. Scientific Series 2004, s-43, Montreal.Search in Google Scholar

[41] South Africa (2004) - National Cleaner Production Strategy. Draft 2. Pretoria: Government printer (online). http://unep.or.jp/ietc/knowledge (accessed 31 July 2013).Search in Google Scholar

[42] Stringer L. (2010) - The Green Workplace-Sustainable strategies that benefit employees, the environment, and the bottom line. Paperback edition. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.Search in Google Scholar

Recommended articles from Trend MD

Plan your remote conference with Sciendo