2020 was a year of contradictions. We saw a world turned upside down by a global pandemic and devastated by bushfires. But those catastrophes have also brought opportunities, and we chose to focus on the silver linings.
The bushfires shone a light on the climate crisis. Up and down the country Australians, and the business community, are now more engaged than ever on the issue and thinking about the way they can have an impact. We’ve seen a groundswell of organisations looking to set ambitious, science-based emissions targets, and to climate change proof their assets and business models.
The pandemic’s impact has been multi-faceted. The social and economic impacts have been devastating. Rays of sunshine have come from the clearer skies and cleaner rivers, and many of us have slowed down and thought about things that we have previously taken for granted. We have innovated in the way we collaborate and developed new services and solutions, grabbing the opportunity and time to think differently.
The shutdown of waste exports has been a jolt to the prevalent take-make-dispose consumption model here in Australia. As a consequence, the circular economy is the call to action and common goal for government and businesses. We’ve shown our commitment to creating change by joining the Australian Circular Economy Hub as its first technical partner, and welcoming CircleCo into the Edge family.
As the year came to a close, there were good reasons to feel optimistic about 2021. We opened our Melbourne office and Joe Biden won the US election. As I write this we’re seeing the US re-join the Paris Agreement and put emissions reductions at the front and centre of its policy agenda. The latter could be a game-changer in addressing climate change and driving the clean energy transformation.
Finally, the last words have to be for the people around us. Our team members have responded magnificently to a challenging year, showing agility, flexibility and passion. Our valued partners continue to amaze us with their willingness to collaborate. And of course our clients – many of whom we count as friends – have shown incredible commitment to sustainability even as the world order has been shaken to its core. Our mission stands on their shoulders.
I hope you enjoy this summary of Edge’s 2020 journey. We all look forward to a new year that’s defined by hope.