At the Baltic Sustainability Awards, progress requires partnership. Complex challenges like climate change and social inequality cannot be solved by any organization alone – they demand coordinated effort from cross-sector allies. That's why partnership is embedded in the DNA of our awards program.
We catalyze innovation and multiply impact by convening passionate partners from diverse industries. Together, we can raise awareness, celebrate excellence, foster community, and drive meaningful change around sustainability challenges in the Baltics and beyond.
In this spirit, we're honored to collaborate with four purpose-driven partners supporting this year's awards – Rimi Baltic Group, EY Baltic, Luminor Group, and Riga City Council. Each brings invaluable expertise and experience advancing sustainability across their organizations and the wider region.
Rimi Baltic Group – A Retail Sustainability Leader
As our founding partner, Rimi Baltic Group has been an ideal ally in launching and growing the Baltic Sustainability Awards. Rimi Baltic operates over 250 stores across the three Baltic countries of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, employing over 10,000 people.
For example, Rimi Baltic continues working to reduce its environmental footprint, cutting CO2 emissions by 3% in 2022 over 2021 levels. Rimi Baltic is committed to achieving net zero emissions by 2030.
On the waste front, through checkout innovations like digital receipts and mobile scanning, Rimi avoided using over 17 tons of paper in 2022. Other solutions like reusable plastic walls for transport packing helped reduce plastic waste by 70 tons annually. Rimi Baltic reduced its proportion of food waste by 13% to 2.0% of total food procured, down from 2.3% in 2021. This was achieved through increased food donations to local food banks, reaching 3,007 tons donated across the Baltics. They've also set ambitious targets around sustainable sourcing, ethical trade, and supporting local suppliers that underscore their commitment.
This track record aligns perfectly with our vision at the awards – recognizing those organizations walking the walk to drive real-world sustainability progress. We're proud to collaborate with a partner like Rimi, who inspires others through their authentic actions and initiatives.
EY Baltic – Methodology With Integrity
EY Baltic's reputation for excellence in advisory services makes it an ideal methodology partner for the awards. As part of the global EY network, they provide robust assurance, tax, transactions, strategy, and consulting solutions to leading Baltic organizations.
This deep expertise in assessing organizations and implementing strategic initiatives is invaluable for developing the awards evaluation criteria. EY Baltic helps ensure our methodology is fair, comprehensive, and rigorous in identifying sustainability excellence.
For example, EY designed our scoring frameworks to confirm that they accurately evaluate relevant factors like impact, innovation, and scalability. They also align with our juries on the criteria weightings each year and provide training on consistent application of the methodology.
Furthermore, EY brings hands-on experience running its own Sustainability Excellence Awards programs, recognizing standout initiatives globally. This provides a helpful perspective in designing and evolving our awards.
By partnering with EY Baltic, we benefit immensely from their real-world experience in what constitutes sustainability excellence across various industries and contexts. Their unbiased guidance enables us to celebrate the organizations truly leading on these issues through the awards program.
Luminor Group – Financing for Sustainable Impact
As a financial services provider in the Baltics, Luminor Group delivers essential expertise in sustainable finance and investing. Extensive lending, investment, and insurance offerings enable customers to deploy capital in alignment with sustainability objectives.
For example, Luminor has provided green loans to the renewable energy company Green Genius to implement 35-megawatt remote solar parks in Lithuania. They took several steps to realize their ESG ambitions and received from Sustainalytics a 'Low Risk' ESG risk rating, the best of its kind among central banks in the Baltic region. Luminor also manages sustainability-focused investment funds and facilitates sustainability-linked bonds.
This real-life experience with financing enables Luminor to evaluate sustainability initiatives through an investor lens at our awards. Are they commercially viable? Do they have robust impact measurement practices? Can they scale effectively? The perspective of a sustainability financing leader is hugely beneficial in assessing applicants.
By supporting initiatives like our awards, Luminor expands awareness around sustainable investing opportunities. This builds partnerships, unlocks capital flows, and accelerates the growth of promising sustainability solutions. We're excited to collaborate with a financier so actively enabling positive impact.
Riga City Council – Enabling Sustainable Communities
As our Host city and heart of progress in Latvia, Riga City Council provides invaluable government perspective in our partnership. Riga's policies, infrastructure, and services directly shape the quality of life for thousands of citizens.
For example, Riga has invested heavily in public transportation, cycling infrastructure, and pedestrian-friendly spaces. Nearly half of all journeys in the city happen via walking, cycling or public transport. Riga has also begun implementing energy efficiency projects.
Riga provides extensive public services on the social front, spanning education, healthcare, housing, culture, and recreation. These enable citizens to access opportunities and resources needed to thrive. Riga collaborates with employers, educators, and civil society to foster an equitable, inclusive society.
By directly enabling sustainable living, the Riga City Council provides the real-world context to evaluate initiatives through a civic lens. Their insights on scalability, policy impacts, and community benefits help ensure a comprehensive evaluation. We're thankful for their partnership in creating the conditions that allow sustainability to flourish.
The Power of Partnership
At the Baltic Sustainability Awards, we know progress requires partnership. The challenges ahead demand we harness diverse strengths while speaking with a unified voice. We can fully understand these complex issues and realize innovative, holistic solutions by coming together across sectors. By championing sustainability in partnership, we hold ourselves accountable to meaningful action that drives the needed change.
We're deeply grateful to our partners for joining us on this journey to identify, celebrate, and catalyze sustainability excellence in the Baltics. Stay tuned for announcements of even more partners supporting the awards!