Level 2
Unit No:
Guided learning hours:
24 hours

Assessment Guidance

Portfolio of evidence


To develop learners' understanding of sustainability and ways in which businesses can operate more sustainably.

Unit Learning Outcomes


Understand what is meant by sustainability. 

Sustainability is the ability to meet current needs without compromising on future generations’ ability to meet their needs.

Three key pillars: 

  • environmental health
  • economic benefits (recognising environmental friendliness of goods and services as benefitting the economy)
  • social equity (fair access to resources and opportunities and full participation in the social and cultural life of a community.)

Government aims: make laws, set out policies (e.g. net zero strategy), and taxes (e.g. fuel duty) that help protect the environment from further damage, reduce use of non-renewable resources and encourage use of renewables; encouraging or requiring businesses and individuals to change behaviours; fair ways of doing this that do not disadvantage particular groups; achieving internationally agreed goals and targets.

Business aims: achieve compliance with UK laws/guidelines; reduce costs; positive brand and consumer approval; guaranteeing longer-term survival of business.

Assessment Criteria

  • 1.1

    Explain the three key pillars of sustainability. 

  • 1.2

    Summarise what governments are aiming to achieve through sustainability. 

  • 1.3

    Explain what businesses are aiming to achieve through sustainability. 


Understand how human activity is threatening sustainability.

Environmental impact: climate change/global warming; biodiversity loss; pollution of air and water; deforestation; ozone depletion.

Different human activities: use of fossil fuels, plastics – disposable single-use culture, materialism, intensive farming and fishing, travel/transport.

Threats to sustainability: population growth and urbanisation, energy use and global warming, excessive waste generation and the subsequent pollution of soil, air, and water, transportation in cities, and limited supply of resources.

Need for changes in social, economic, and environmental processes to achieve a balanced relationship between nature and humans.

Assessment Criteria

  • 2.1

    Assess the environmental impact of different human activities and the related threat to sustainability. 


Know about sustainability goals and targets. 

17 UN sustainable development goals.

Environmental targets in UK 25-year environment plan.

For a chosen sector, relevance of general UK targets and, where they exist, sector-specific targets, including those identified in the UK Net Zero Strategy (e.g. Construction 2025 targets; Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action); changes in practices these might entail.

Assessment Criteria

  • 3.1

    Describe global sustainability goals, targets and indicators.

  • 3.2

    State how sustainability goals and UK environmental targets are linked.

  • 3.3

    Describe the importance of sustainability targets to a particular sector.


Understand how businesses can work towards achieving sustainability. 

Ways a business can reduce its consumption of limited resources and find alternative resources with lower environmental consequences - in own practice and across supply chain, e.g.

  • Improved waste management
  • Switching to cleaner fuel/renewable energy
  • Reducing use of non-recyclables
  • Investing in research
  • Educating employees and customers
  • Changing suppliers to those with more sustainable practices. 

Progress in comparison to similar businesses/organisations and/or from own starting point against relevant targets.

Assessment Criteria

  • 4.1

    Explain different strategies businesses can use to work towards sustainability.

  • 4.2

    Assess the progress a chosen business or sector is making towards achieving sustainability.