This Guidance demonstrates how to use Retrieval-Augmented Generation (RAG) for your environmental, social, and governance (ESG) or sustainability knowledge base by combining Amazon Kendra and a large language model (LLM) from Amazon Bedrock—a fully managed service offering high-performing foundation models.

Designed to provide rapid insights, the RAG process enables efficient navigation and summarization of diverse ESG information sources like corporate reports, regulatory filings, and industry standards. It allows you to analyze extensive text data quickly, extract key insights, and draw informed conclusions to support your organization’s ESG reporting needs.

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Architecture Diagram

[Architecture diagram description]

Download the architecture diagram PDF 

Well-Architected Pillars

The AWS Well-Architected Framework helps you understand the pros and cons of the decisions you make when building systems in the cloud. The six pillars of the Framework allow you to learn architectural best practices for designing and operating reliable, secure, efficient, cost-effective, and sustainable systems. Using the AWS Well-Architected Tool, available at no charge in the AWS Management Console, you can review your workloads against these best practices by answering a set of questions for each pillar.

The architecture diagram above is an example of a Solution created with Well-Architected best practices in mind. To be fully Well-Architected, you should follow as many Well-Architected best practices as possible.

  • Amazon Bedrock and Lambda provide serverless compute capabilities, helps to eliminate virtual machine imaging, operating system upgrades, and patching. Amazon Kendra offers an optimized Retriever API with a semantic ranker, tailored for RAG with Amazon Bedrock.

    Together, these services automate critical aspects like LLM deployment, code implementation, scaling, and failover. By reducing human intervention and accelerating response times during operations, they help minimize the likelihood of errors and help provide consistent, efficient operations. This allows you to harness the power of generative artificial intelligence (AI) while maintaining a streamlined, low-maintenance architecture.

    Read the Operational Excellence whitepaper 
  • AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) integrates with Lambda, enabling authentication across services like Amazon Kendra and Amazon Bedrock without storing long-term credentials in your application code.

    IAM identity-based policies also enable granular control over access to Amazon Kendra resources, such as denying specific users from querying certain indexes. By governing access and permitted actions across all involved services, IAM enforces the principle of least privilege. This robust, policy-driven security model helps ensure this Guidance allows you to maintain tight access controls.

    Read the Security whitepaper 
  • Amazon Bedrock, Lambda, Amazon Kendra, and DynamoDB are fully managed, serverless offerings that are deployed across multiple Availability Zones by default, providing inherent redundancy and fault tolerance without manual configuration.

    By avoiding long-running compute or databases requiring maintenance, potential failure points are reduced. You benefit from a highly available, reliable solution backed by the global infrastructure of AWS.

    Read the Reliability whitepaper 
  • Amazon Bedrock is a fully managed generative AI service offering a choice of foundation models accessible through a unified API. This single integration point allows quick experimentation across providers and seamless adoption of the latest model versions—all with minimal code changes.

    Using a multi-model API provides flexibility and scalability. You can efficiently utilize the right resources for each task, seamlessly adapting as requirements evolve.

    Read the Performance Efficiency whitepaper 
  • Lambda, Amazon Bedrock, and Amazon Kendra are fully managed services that automatically scale based on demand. These services also offer the capability to adopt a pay-as-you-go pricing model, ensuring you only pay for the resources actively processing requests. For example, Amazon Bedrock offers on-demand and batch modes, allowing for the use of FMs without time-based commitments.

    Additionally, these services reduce the operational burden on DevOps teams by minimizing infrastructure management and maintenance tasks, lowering associated costs. By minimizing idle resource usage, adopting efficient pricing models, reducing maintenance overhead, and optimizing data handling, Lambda, Amazon Bedrock, and Amazon Kendra can lead to lower operational costs while maintaining your required performance levels.

    Read the Cost Optimization whitepaper 
  • By using the managed services provided in this Guidance, the responsibility of maintaining high utilization and optimization is shifted to AWS. AWS is on a path to matching 100% of the electricity powering our operations with renewable energy by 2025 and committed to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2040.

    Moreover, the RAG approach using Amazon Kendra and Amazon Bedrock is effective for augmenting LLM capabilities by retrieving and integrating relevant external information from predefined datasets. This strategy aims to minimize the resources required to train models on new data or build new models from the beginning.

    Read the Sustainability whitepaper 

Implementation Resources

The sample code is a starting point. It is industry validated, prescriptive but not definitive, and a peek under the hood to help you begin.


The executive’s guide to generative AI for sustainability

This blog post serves as a starting point for any executive seeking to navigate the intersection of generative artificial intelligence (generative AI) and sustainability.


The sample code; software libraries; command line tools; proofs of concept; templates; or other related technology (including any of the foregoing that are provided by our personnel) is provided to you as AWS Content under the AWS Customer Agreement, or the relevant written agreement between you and AWS (whichever applies). You should not use this AWS Content in your production accounts, or on production or other critical data. You are responsible for testing, securing, and optimizing the AWS Content, such as sample code, as appropriate for production grade use based on your specific quality control practices and standards. Deploying AWS Content may incur AWS charges for creating or using AWS chargeable resources, such as running Amazon EC2 instances or using Amazon S3 storage.

References to third-party services or organizations in this Guidance do not imply an endorsement, sponsorship, or affiliation between Amazon or AWS and the third party. Guidance from AWS is a technical starting point, and you can customize your integration with third-party services when you deploy the architecture.

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