2014 Newsweek Green Rankings show improvement in environmental performance disclosure by global firms

TORONTO, June 5, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Newsweek, together with research partner Corporate Knights Capital, today released the 2014 Newsweek Green Rankings.

The Newsweek Green Rankings evaluate the world's largest publicly traded companies using eight metrics that collectively provide a transparent measurement of overall corporate environmental performance.

Companies were scored on each metric against their industry peers using a 0-100% scale. Using an industry-relative scale provides a chance for companies in every industry to score high or low depending on the choices they have made. Of the top 25 companies in the 2014 US Green Rankings, 90% of the sectors have representation, including materials, utilities, industrials and energy.

To assess companies on corporate reputation and environmental risks and litigation, Corporate Knights Capital partnered with RepRisk, the leading business intelligence provider on environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks.

The Newsweek Green Rankings consist of the U.S. 500, which ranks the 500 largest publicly traded companies in the United States by market cap and the Global 500, which looks at the 500 largest publicly traded companies globally by market cap. 

The top-ranked company on the U.S. 500 was Allergan, the California-based pharma company best known as the world's largest producer of Botox.  Widely recognized as a corporate environmental leader, Allergan began formulating an environmental strategy more than 20 years ago, with recent efforts focused on innovative waste management initiatives and energy efficiency projects.

Vivendi, the French media and telecommunications giant, was the top ranked company on the Global 500.  Vivendi's strong showing in the ranking was influenced by the company's comprehensive renewable energy strategy and efforts to tie the remuneration of its senior executives to corporate environmental performance targets. 

"The Newsweek Green Rankings show which companies stand out from their industry peers on an increasingly important suite of performance metrics," said Toby Heaps, CEO of Corporate Knights Capital.  "The ranking offers unique insights about how the world's largest companies are positioned around a wide variety of material themes, including climate change, rising energy costs and water scarcity."

"What we're seeing more and more is a direct link between corporate sustainability, reputation, and financial success," said Elijah Wolfson, senior editor at Newsweek. "Many of the world's largest public companies have begun to recognize that in order to be successful moving forward, they need to openly account for their environmental impact. The goal of Newsweek's Green Rankings is to add to and push for this type of accountability."

In addition to uncovering sharp differences in environmental performance both within and among industries, the project found that a majority of the world's largest companies are now disclosing environmental data to the market.

Notably, over 75% of the Global 500 and 60% of the U.S. 500 now disclose data on their carbon emissions to investors.  This compares to almost no disclosure a decade ago.

"The upward tick in environmental disclosure identified in this project is a well-documented macro trend," said Heaps.  "We believe this reflects growing pressure for expanded corporate reporting from investor groups and the growing number of jurisdictions that require environmental disclosure."

Figure 1.  Disclosure of environmental data in the Newsweek Green Rankings.


Energy

GHGs

(Scope 1 and 2)

GHGs (Scope 3)

Water

Waste

U.S. 500

59%

62%

33%

41%

34%

Global 500

78%

78%

52%

63%

57%

Source: Corporate Knights Capital

A full description of the methodology for the 2014 Newsweek Green Rankings can be found online at http://www.newsweek.com/2014-newsweek-green-rankings-243744  

The 2014 Newsweek Green Rankings – Top 10 from the U.S. 500

Rank

Company Name

Country

GICS Industry Group

1

Allergan

United States

Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology

2

Adobe Systems

United States

Software & Services

3

Ball Corporation

United States

Materials

4

Ecolab

United States

Materials

5

Sigma-Aldrich

United States

Materials

6

McCormick

United States

Food Beverage & Tobacco

7

Biogen Idec

United States

Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology

8

Rockwell Automation

United States

Capital Goods

9

Cardinal Health

United States

Health Care Equipment & Services

10

Agilent Technologies

United States

Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology

The 2014 Newsweek Green Rankings – Top 10 from the Global 500         

Rank

Company Name

Country of Headquarters

GICS Industry Group

1

Vivendi

France

Telecommunication Services

2

Allergan

United States

Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology

3

Adobe Systems

United States

Software & Services

4

Kering

France

Consumer Durables & Apparel

5

NTT DOCOMO

Japan

Telecommunication Services

6

Ecolab

United States

Materials

7

Atlas Copco

Sweden

Capital Goods

8

Biogen Idec

United States

Pharmaceuticals, Biotechnology

9

Compass Group

United Kingdom

Consumer Services

10

Schneider Electric

France

Capital Goods

About Corporate Knights Capital
Corporate Knights Capital is an independent investment research company based in Toronto, Canada. The company's parent, Corporate Knights, launched the world's first global corporate sustainability ranking in 2005 ("The Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World"). For more information, please visit www.corporateknightscapital.com

About Newsweek
Newsweek is one the world's premier weekly news magazines. Newsweek has been a staple of American media for over 80 years, bringing high-quality journalism to millions of readers around the globe. Newsweek publishes print editions in Japanese, Korean, Polish, Spanish, Arabic, and Turkish, as well as an English language international edition, but is a primarily digital property available across platforms and devices. Newsweek provides in-depth analysis, news and opinion about international issues, technology, business, culture and politics. For more information, please visit www.newsweek.com

About RepRisk
RepRisk is the leading provider of business intelligence on environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks. RepRisk's ESG database serves as a due diligence tool and covers 41,000 companies, 10,000 projects, all sectors and countries, as well as 6,000 NGOs and 5,000 governmental bodies. For more information, please visit www.reprisk.com

For information contact:
Toby Heaps, President & CEO, Corporate Knights Inc.     
toby@corporateknights.com
416-274-1432

Elijah Wolfson, Senior Editor, Newsweek
e.wolfson@newsweek.com

Doug Morrow, Managing Director, Corporate Knights Capital
doug@corporateknights.com 
416-272-5483

Michael Yow, Lead Analyst, Corporate Knights Capital
Michael@corporateknights.com 
647-686-0251

Lyn Brown, Managing Director, Corporate Knights Inc.
lyn@corporateknights.com 
604-341-0233

SOURCE Corporate Knights



RELATED LINKS
www.corporateknightscapital.com

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