• About

    Conselho Empresarial Brasileiro para o Desenvolvimento (CEBDS) is a nonprofit civil organization founded in 1997 for the purpose of fostering sustainable development among companies that do business in Brazil. CEBDS’s 70 member companies represent about 40% of national GDP and come from different sectors, including financial capital, energy, transportation, the steel industry, metallurgy, civil construction, services and consumer goods.

    CEBDS is organised into seven chambers, which meet every 45 days to discuss issues connected to each chamber’s focus of interest: Water, Biodiversity and Biotechnology, Communication and Education, Sustainable Financing, Energy and Climate Change, Sustainable Mobility and Materials.


    • 70 companies.

    Shared Members with WBCSD

    • (32) Accenture, Alcoa, Abril, Anglo American, ArcelorMittal, BASF, Bayer, Coca-Cola, DNV GL , Dow Chemical Co., EDP, Ernst & Young, GE, Lafarge, L´Oréal, Masisa, Michelin, Monsanto, Natura, Nestlé Group, Pepsico, Petrobras, Phillips Petroleum Co., Pirelli, Shell, Schneider Electric, Siemens, Solvay, Syngenta, Unilever, Vale, Votorantim.

  • Activities

    Building the Business Case

    • CEBDS partners with Cambridge University to offer the Business and Sustainability Programme (the “Cambridge Course”), oriented towards educating business leaders, policymakers and third sector leaders on the strategic relevance of sustainability to companies’ value and reinforcing their commitment in this domain.
    • CEBDS also sponsors several events, such as the biennial Sustainable International Congress, at which major public and private sector experts and representatives from academia and NGOs convene to discuss contemporary issues in sustainability.
    • CEBDS hosts the Council of Sustainability Leaders, a forum that brings together the CEOs of member companies for regular meetings.
    • CEBDS will publish two sustainability manuals by company area in 2014.

  • Action2020-related Activities

    National Action2020 Plan

    • CEBDS is working to adapt Action2020, in particular the Societal Must-Haves and Business Solutions, to a Brazilian context. As regards the Societal Must-Haves, CEBDS is working closely with a group of experts in each priority area identified by the working groups. In the second phase of the project, which is more focused on business solutions, CEBDS plans to collaborate closely with companies.

    Climate Change

    • CEBDS has participated in all UN Conferences of Parties on Climate Change and Biodiversity, either through related events or with publications, since 1998.
    • Climate financing: CEBDS is organizing workshops and a study to understand ways to overcome the barriers to credit and the investment options already offered.
    • Climate risk management project: CEBDS works to educate companies on the various risks related to climate change.
    • Rio Sustainable City: CEBDS partners in a project that brings together a diverse group of companies in collaboration with the municipality and government of Rio de Janeiro to create realistic, practical and economically sustainable strategies for urban development. A pilot project has been launched in Chapeu Mangueira, a community located on the slopes of Morro da Babilonia (Mount Babilonia), which is part of an Environmentally Protected Area (the EPA includes Mounts Babilonia and São João). Five specific actions have been identified to better align urban development and sustainability: 1) Cooperative housing retrofitting: Providing cooperative work support to rebuild lodging in line with with main sustainability indicators of improvement (GHG reduction, energy efficiency, water consumption, health, wealth and education); 2) Green urban infrastructure: Providing support for the use of green construction and the implementation of urban planning know-how and technology; 3) Urban Agriculture Initiative: Promoting low emission food production and leveraging the local economy, 4) Environmental and cultural tourism: Fostering existing tourism initiatives that showcase local historical and environmental resources; 5) Cooperative waste management: Providing investment and education to local actors to manage the waste life cycle.
    • CEBDS is leading discussions on the impact of the private sector on Brazilian traffic and CO2 emissions and how to mitigate it through company-led initiatives.


    • CEBDS has been working to adapt the WBCSD Water Tool and the CERES Aqua Gauge, a tool to help companies improve and communicate their water risk management approach, to a Brazilian context, and now offers them as services to its member companies.
    • Waste treatment: CEBDS is working to mitigate the impacts of poor sanitation among Brazilian companies.


    • Business Ecosystems Training: CEBDS is adapting the WBCSD’s BET programme to a Brazilian context and offering it as a service to CEBDS member companies.
    • Payment for ecosystem services: With several bills under discussion in the Brazilian Congress, the Biodiversity, Water, and Energy and Climate Change working groups of CEBDS have initiated discussions to define the business sector’s converging positions on this new legal instrument. CEBDS is developing a publication to show the conclusions of this work.
    • Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing: Brazil is reviewing the national legislation on access and benefit sharing. CEBDS is the representative of the business sector in the Federal Council of Genetic Resources (CGEN) and is organizing capacity-building workshops and a publication on the Nagoya Protocol.

    Sustainable Lifestyles

    • Sustainable Procurement Manual: The manual provides guidance to improve companies’ procurement process by adding sustainability criteria, especially with respect to the selection of suppliers. The CEBDS Sustainable Procurement Manual differs from other materials on the market by answering not just why companies should invest in a sustainable procurement process but also how.
    • Life-Cycle Analysis: CEBDS is preparing to be the secretariat of the Brazilian Business Life-Cycle Network, a recently formed, business-led voluntary network that was created to discuss the Life-Cycle Analysis tools in the Brazilian context and how to enhance their use and recognition by the private sector.

    Basic Needs and Rights

    • Microfinance: CEBDS is researching ways to scale up microcredits and micro-insurance mechanisms.

    Redefining Value

    • PESE (Brazilian Business and Ecosystem Services Partnership): This biodiversity impact management project draws on specific tools, the CEV (Corporate Ecosystem Valuation) and the ESR (Ecosystem Services Review), to help companies better understand how to value natural resources and how such valuation affects their business, in terms of both risks and opportunities.
    • WBCDS’s GHG Protocol’s tool for the Supply Chain: The project is targeted to large companies’ suppliers, with the goal of helping them understand and evaluate their GHG emissions inventories.
    • Integrated Reporting (IIRC Framework): The objective of this training is to aggregate different tools for reporting extrafinancial information within the IIRC Framework.
    • Adaptation to the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB): CEBDS is developing a roadmap to assist businesses in the health care, financial, nonrenewable energy, technology and communications sectors report these indicators.
    • Sustainability reporting for the supply chain: This educational effort again targets the suppliers of member companies and provides guidance in preparing a sustainability report.
    • Natural capital and the financial sector: Together with the GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit, German Society for International Cooperation), CEBDS is developing a series of workshops and events, based on expert studies, to help financial institutions build capacity with respect to green finance issues.
    • Reporting: The objective is to implement reporting-related actions recommended by Vision Brazil 2050, including reporting at multiple points in the supply chain.

  • Government Engagement and External Collaboration

    • CEBDS is spearheading a collaboration among the CEOs of its member companies to build an agenda that will be presented to the candidates for the Brazilian presidency and state governorships during the 2014 election year.
    • CEBDS has developed several partnerships over the years with important actors in government, academia and the nonprofit sector, including the Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Development, the Ministry of Industry, the Ministry of External Relations, CNI (the National Confederation of Industry Brazil), Febraban (Brazilian Federation of Banks), Instituto Ethos, Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV), the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, and the World Resource Institute.

  • Collaboration with Global Network Partners

    • Collaborates with Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Uruguay, Honduras, and Nicaragua in developing a CEO survey to collect business’ perspective on various sustainability-related topics. The 2014 survey and following publication is focused on Climate Change.

Global Network Collaboration


Action2020 Engagement