Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Sustainability Reporting

A report from the Sustainable Investment Research Analyst Network (SIRAN) a couple of weeks ago highlights how important Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) reports are becoming. The report says that more than half of the 100 largest publicly traded companies in the US report on their sustainability effort. I suspect the proportion would be significantly lower in European countries, where CSR reporting is much more piecemeal.

Anyway, the report also highlighted the fact that around a third of these 100 companies incorporate aspects of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) guidelines. GRI was established in 1997 with the mission of developing globally applicable guidelines for reporting on the economic, environmental, and social performance of corporations, governments and NGOs. The first draft guidelines were released in 1999.

Other findings from the research included:

- 86 of the S&P 100 companies have corporate sustainability web sites

- 49 produced a sustainability report in 2007 (up from 39 in 2005)

- 41 made some reference to GRI standards

- 34 included a GRI Index in their report.

There's more information about the research here, but it just goes to show how important sustainability reporting is becoming. SITS companies need to see whether their own CSR reports are adequate and whether they can help their clients with theirs. There are niche specialists in this market, such as Enablon in France which provides software solutions and is a technological partner of the GRI.

© The Green IT Review

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