Discuss about the Natural Resource Management Futures.
Sustainability is an essential element in a workplace to ensure that the Company reaps economic benefits as well as it fulfills its moral obligations towards the community and the environment at large. Therefore, every organization implements sustainable policies required for the business to give sustainability in their operations. In this study, the sustainable plan of Webster will be developed with the guidelines and then the plan will be written in order to gain the sustainability.
Webster is a well-known Australian agribusiness company dealing with mainly three kinds of businesses: walnuts, agriculture and water. The Australian agricultural industry is associated closely with Webster, which involves itself in a wide variety of activities. Webster is the largest producer of walnuts in the southern hemisphere ("Welcome", 2016). Webster also holds vast areas of fertile land across Queensland and New South Wales where it grows cotton, cereals and legumes. Webster also owns over 200,000 mega liters of water for its walnuts production and agricultural purpose ("Welcome", 2016). Hence, the Company needs to follow adequate sustainable policies in its workplace since it deals directly with some of the key natural resources of Australia: soil, water and natural vegetation.
If an organisation wants to develop a sustainable policy to uphold the natural resources in the country, Webster has to go through the range of sources from where they can get the idea of developing a plan. In order to gain this, the company has to go through the industry guidelines to increase the knowledge about the working procedures of them. In this purpose, the company has to follow the guidelines of the Global Reporting Initiative that has set some rules to maintain by the organisation in Australia to protect the natural resources of the country. They have to follow the Natural Resource Management, which aims to maintain sustainability in the nation while planning the sustainability plan. The Australian Government Biodiversity Fund facilitates the farmers in reinforcing biodiversity and supporting the resilience of environment against the ravages of human beings ("Australian farming and agriculture – grazing and cropping | australia.gov.au", 2016). Webster itself practices sustainable methods like promoting biodiversity in case of agriculture and planting legumes to keep the fertility of the land intact. The company has the responsibility of prudent utilization of water and fertilizers in keeping with the latest sustainability and natural resource management laws of the Government ("Ecosystem services and Australian natural resource management (NRM) futures | Department of the Environment and Energy", 2016).
Rules of policy writing:
For framing a report on sustainability policy, certain important rules need to be followed to help in the quick analysis of the present scenario.
The document should be written in a manner that they could convey their message to the audience in a proper manner about their sustainability plan (Patton et al., 2015). This will help to relate their audience to understand their needs and as per the requirement, the language should be detected. The identification of the central problem will be followed by determination of the kind of policies to be followed to deal with the problems presented. The policies have to follow closely the organization’s own legislations and the government regulations.
The methods need to be appropriately chosen to implement the policies in the apt context. Along with this, the language should be very easy to understand and professional without any vagueness.
The organization’s general principles and philosophies should be followed while developing the sustainable report for the company.
The policies should be mentioned in the report in lucid and clear language so that the stakeholders do not face any difficulty in understanding the policies (Patton et al., 2015). The report should also make way for the uncertainties that might take place during the implementation of the policy (Patton et al., 2015). Exact numerical data should be included in the reports to substantiate the claims and the policies.
The policy has to be authorized by the company board and local legislator.
Key Components of Stakeholders:
The policy development policy should take into the consideration the various stakeholders associated with Webster (Patton et al., 2015).
The customers of Webster would consist of the retail outlets where the company would sell the walnuts and cotton and other crops. The staff would comprise the farmers, specialists, technical staff, and the board of members and so on.
The investors should invest money in the projects and a promotion where the company is operating to gain sustainability in their business. The local community is also an important stakeholder in the agribusiness industry of Webster (Patton et al., 2015).
The regulators on behalf of the Government also count as important stakeholders. Their needs should concern the company, as Webster is dependent on each of them for successfully running the company.
The sustainability issues concerning the company would deal with the optimal usage of the natural resources like soil and water. The company needs to utilize the water entitlements it owns and it should also regulate the amount of fertilizers to be introduced in the fields ("Sustainable farm management - CSIRO", 2016). The customers would need the crops to be pesticide free and germ free and hence the farmers have to determine the quantity of fertilizers. Too much emphasis on the one aspect of the agricultural side of the business might prove to be uneconomical and time consuming ("Sustainable farm management - CSIRO", 2016).
The farmers have to keep a count upon the fertilizers and pesticides used in per unit area of the field to prevent extra use of those harmful chemicals.
The company needs to fix a period for achievement of short term, medium term and long-term goals.
The company has adequate representation of gender diversity on board and it seeks to employ specialists in the different domains of the organization.
The company to maintain sustainability in the business adapts the National Resource Management policies.
Latest technology, which makes the process efficient, eco friendly and cost effective
New methods of resource utilization are implemented to continue with the practice of sustainability.
Breadth of the policy application: The scope of the organization will comprise implementation of the policy in the whole organization. The agribusiness should be under the scope of the NRM policies, which dictates the laws that the company has to follow. An integrated policy should be taken up to establish the sustainability in the organization. The policy should focus on the economic, social and environmental aspects of the organization. When it comes to agriculture, it must be kept in mind that the worldwide demand for food security has been raised. The demand for food has also become directly proportional to the rise in population (Garnett et al., 2013). Increased crop production requires more utilization of land that puts wetlands, grasslands and forests in danger. The approach also needs to be based on the latest technology to promote diversity and efficiency (Garnett et al., 2013). Further, the Company should follow the guidelines mentioned in the Environmental Management Systems (EMS) policy to address the environmental issues ("horticulturefortomorrow.com.au", 2016). The implementation of the guidelines mentioned in the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) can have a positive impact on the Company’s corporate social responsibility (Vigneau et al., 2015).
Workplace Sustainability Policy: The sustainability policy of the Company should comply with the relevant laws of the land and the instructions explained in the Natural Resource Management. The following should form the basic guidelines in the sustainability policy:
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) should be implemented to ensure effective pest management and pest control in the agriculture ("Sustainable farm management - CSIRO", 2016).
Precision Agriculture should be adopted to promote and develop tools that would minimize environmental and economic risks ("Sustainable farm management - CSIRO", 2016).
Australia’s natural resources are crucial for the nation and hence steps should be taken to ensure sustainable agriculture. The land should be put to optimal utilization through proper planning and resource assessment ("Sustainable farm management - CSIRO", 2016).
The Research & Development Department should invest in research that would lead to improved methods of agriculture and walnut plantation.
The formulation of the policy should be followed by its proper implementation to achieve the desired result. The following steps might be helpful in communicating the policy in the organization and its various stakeholders:
The report should be made public by putting it on the company website to make the guidelines known to everyone associated with Webster (Benn et al., 2014).
The policy needs to be broken up in to smaller parts with each part being a small term goal so that the goals would be easier to achieve (Benn et al., 2014).
Experts can be called in to make sure that the farmers to accomplish sustainability (Benn et al., 2014) apply the new and improved facilities of agriculture.
A team should be appointed to overlook the implementation of the policy in the organization and make sure that the protocols adopted are maintained (Benn et al., 2014).
Records should be maintained to measure the achievement of the policy in the organization, which would act as an inspiration for furthering the implementation of policy (Benn et al., 2014).
The increasing awareness of the environmental issues has compelled the Company and the government to come up with sustainability policies. The sustainability policies have been formulated for Webster in the fields of agriculture, walnut plantation and water entitlements. However, formulation of effective policies is not enough for the Company to actually implement them in real life scenario. Hence, the communication system plays an important role in the execution of the policies and protocols of the Company (Kataria et al., 2013). The employees within the organization should be initiated in to sustainability practices. Other stakeholders associated with Webster are the various suppliers, the community and the local legislator (Kataria et al., 2013). Analysts have seen that the employees generally possess a high sense of sustainability and if motivated properly, they are willing to adopt the policies of the company. The staff should be encouraged to participate in sustainability activities which would ultimately prove to be beneficial for the company (Kataria et al., 2013).
In a recent research, it has been shown that merely dictating the scientific information regarding the environmental policies will not be successful in the willing participation of the staff in the process (Young et al., 2014). The stake holders should be included in the informative discussion in workshops and training sessions. When the specialist and the farmers come in face to face interaction, they can engage in an instructive conversation regarding the various issues of environmental concern. Such interactions play a vital role in bringing about biodiversity in the field of agriculture (Young et al., 2014).
The implementation of sustainability policies also call for sustainability assessments and indicators to make sure that the implementation was effective (Lyytimäki et al., 2013). The indicators should be relevant to the policy and the staff. Good indicators do no ensure that the good effects will be achieved. The side effects of indicator may pose problem for the effective communication within the staff. There are different kinds of sustainability indicators usage and they should be utilized in a way that would enable smooth communication strategy (Lyytimäki et al., 2013) .
The sustainability policy that has been formulated has to be communicated to the major stakeholders of the company with the help of the promotional tools. Some of the promotional tools that can be used are as follows:
Presentations: Comprehensive presentations need to be formulated to communicate the policy to the organization (Kataria et al., 2013). They need to be specific as to what would be the new guidelines that have to be followed in the utilization of the land for agriculture and also the fertility of the soil. The walnut production of Webster has to be increased to keep up with the increasing demand of the people world-wide. The yield of the crops will also increase with precision agriculture. The presentation should be clear in its content and style and should be addressed to the key stakeholders of Webster.
Training sessions: The farmers have to be educated on the new styles of farming that would enable them to increase the yield without adversely affecting the quality of the crop and misusing the natural resources like soil and water ("Sustainable farm management - CSIRO", 2016). The farmers would have to undergo intensive training and they have to be technologically upgraded. There have been advancements in the domain of cotton cultivation which would be useful for Webster. The farmers also need to be educated about the policies presented in the Natural Resource Management which would help in maintaining the biodiversity.
Flyer for notice boards /suppliers: The suppliers play an important role in an organization that provides the key materials in a business (Kataria et al., 2013). It is imperative for the corporate board to make sure that the new policies and rules are communicated to the suppliers. The suppliers include suppliers for fuel, fertilizers, and pesticides and so on.
Videos: The Company can also create videos to promote sustainability issues and then upload it in the official website. The videos should contain information regarding the latest farming techniques.
The communication strategy of the company has been decided on the basis of which the sustainability policy will be implemented (Kataria et al., 2013). The implementation policies have to be developed with accordance with the business and then they need to be communicated using the proper channels. The team members have to be informed and communicated the necessary details so that they can help with the sustainability practices. The team may consist of specialists dealing with soil quality, fertilizers experts and other technical staff ("Sustainable farm management - CSIRO", 2016). These team members would assist in helping the farmers in increasing the yield of crops, maintaining the quality of soil, looking after the production of cotton and walnuts which constitute the main business of Webster. Water is a key resource not just in Australia but in the whole world. The United Nations have taken special steps to ensure conservation of water and have issued guidelines to every nation to follow to save water for the future generation. Hence, Webster Limited has an immense responsibility while handing the water entitlements in Queensland and New South Wales. The company uses water from those entitlements to irrigate its crops. The company has to make sure that the water is not wasted in irrigation. The resources have to be used diligently and the farmers should be given access to them ("horticulturefortomorrow.com.au", 2016). The company should make extra effort to implement the policy effectively. The safety work practices should also be maintained to ensure the safety of the employees. They can be given training sessions regarding the safety procedures to be followed while working. The farmers can also be trained regarding the usage of the new and improved equipments. Some of these implements need to be handled carefully and only an expert can show the correct procedure to handle them. Sustainability issues need to be addressed continuously to ensure that the company reaps the benefits of sustainability. The company needs to keep both short and long term goals for environmental issues. The short term goals should be updated from time to time and should correspond with the long term goals.
The company needs to ensure that the implementation of the policy has been effective and successful. There needs to be relevant data showing the implementation in the various domains (Richards, 2012). The outcomes have to be shared with and the feedback needs to be provided to the key shareholders and the company board. The practicality of the policy changes with time which shows that the policy needs to be upgraded (Richards, 2012). Sometimes the policy might work out for a specific field though it seems to fail in some other domain. The level of participation of the employees should also be checked and it should be seen that they are participating willingly and whole heartedly in the activities.
The sustainability is a burning issue in today’s world and steps are taken to ensure that the practices of sustainability are adopted in every domain, particularly the industries. In the scenario chosen above, the sustainability practices were applied to Webster Limited, one of the largest walnut producers of Australia. It also deals with agriculture and water entitlements which call for an optimum usage of the natural resources. The Natural Resource Management has given outlines regarding the implementation of the sustainable issues. The company needs to make sure that the sustainability issues are addressed effectively and the employees have responded positively to the changes. These changes should be measurable to enable the stake holders feel more motivated and interested to follow the procedures.
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