Ikea’s sustainable instinct: Steve Howard at TEDGlobal 2013

6 Jul

Originally posted on TED Blog:

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Photo: James Duncan Davidson

Steve Howard has spent his life working toward sustainability. So on the TEDGlobal 2013 stage, he explains why he wanted to work for, of all places, Ikea.

Howard, who now holds the delightful title of Chief Sustainability Officer at the Scandinavian furniture behemoth, says that the company is dedicated to sustainability because of three numbers:

  • 3. The number of people, in billions, who will be coming out of poverty by 2030 and joining the global middle class as consumers.
  • 6. The number of degrees centigrade that we’re headed toward in global warming. We are currently at less than one degree.
  • 12. The number of cities in the world that had a million people two generations ago. Now, there are 500 cities with a population of a million people or more.

Says Howard, “Sustainability has gone from a nice-to-do to a must-do.”

The vast majority…

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