In the 10 years since the launch of the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), the quality and quantity of reporting on climate change have increased dramatically. CDP is now looking beyond disclosure to identify the companies that are taking active steps toward a low-carbon economy. In 2010, the CDP asked the world’s 500 largest public companies in the FTSE Global Equity Index Series (Global 500) more directly than ever to demonstrate that they are taking action on climate change. This report, prepared by CDP’s global adviser, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), analyzes the responses from those corporations. For this report particular attention was paid to ways that organizations in every sector are capitalizing on commercial opportunities —in particular, those presented by emissions reductions.
Highlights from 2010 disclosures
Global emissions fell 1% last year on the back of the economic downturn, but Scope 1 emissions reported by the Global 500 rose to 3.4 billion metric tonnes CO2-e, now accounting for 11% of total global emissions. Given there was no shift towards intensive companies in the respondents in 2010 this increase reflects a greater focus on carbon management and reporting by the Global 500.
More companies identify significant opportunities than risks from climate change. 86% of the Global 500 respondents identify significant opportunities versus 78% who identify significant risks. Out of the S&P 500 respondents, 70% identify significant opportunity; 66% identify significant risks. It should be noted that last year’s questionnaire asked respondents to disclose whether they perceived opportunities associated with climate change. This year the question was refined to ask respondents instead to identify ‘significant’ climate change opportunities, which resulted in a slight decrease in reported risks and opportunities overall.
The Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index includes the companies with the highest disclosure scores and provides a valuable perspective on the range and quality of responses to CDP’s questionnaire. This year’s CDLI includes the top-scoring 10% of the Global 500 (51 companies) and S&P 500 (53 companies).
Click here for the Global 500 Report
Click here for the S&P 500 Report