CDP Pulls Up 37 Big Indian Companies for Weak Sustainability Reporting

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105 global investors have found several big global corporations, including 37 large Indian ones, falling short on their 2019 sustainability reporting standards. These investors had commissioned CDP, an environmental disclosure campaign platform, to study latest sustainability reports.

CDP has send questionnaires to these companies and has given them time until August 26, 2020 to explain their lapse. The questionnaire is aligned with the recommendations of the United Nations Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures.

The companies being questioned have over $8 trillion in global market capitalization. They are estimated to emit more than 4,800 megatons (Mt) carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) annually.

CDP, a non-profit, operates in 50 countries. It claimed that many companies in the list did not use standardized environment data in their sustainability reports that prohibits any form of comparison. CDP’s annual Non-Disclosure Campaign is to drive further corporate transparency around climate change, deforestation and water security.

CDP provides a platform for investors to engage with companies at scale. Through CDP, investors drive corporate environmental reporting and use this information to identify and engage companies on their environmental impact.

CDP says it is voted number one climate research provider by investors. It works with institutional investors with assets of US$106 trillion. “We leverage investor and buyer power to motivate companies to disclose and manage their environmental impacts. Over 8,400 companies with over 50% of global market capitalization disclosed environmental data through CDP in 2019. This is in addition to the over 920 cities, states and regions who disclosed, making CDP’s platform one of the richest sources of information globally on how companies and governments are driving environmental change. CDP is a founding member of the ‘We Mean Business Coalition.’

How India Fares

CDP reached out to 200 top companies listed in Indian stock markets. Of them, the number of high-impact Indian companies was 22 in 2019; it shot up to 37 in 2020.

Image Credit Youtube – Uploaded by: We Mean Business Coalition

“The number of companies that have been asked to disclose their environmental footprint in India has gone up. This shows greater interest by global investors in India, which is positive as it will push Indian companies to get a greater share of sustainability-focused finance,” said Damandeep Singh, Director, CDP India, told Down to Earth magazine.

While all 37 Indian companies have been asked to furnish details of their impact on climate change, eight have been asked to give information on deforestation. 15 companies have been asked to furnish information on water security status.

 “Climate change, water security and deforestation present material risks to investments, and companies that are failing to disclose their impact risk trailing behind their competitors in their access to capital… investors require decisive data that is consistent, comparable and comprehensive,” said Emily Kreps, global director of capital markets, CDP, in a press note.

CDP said the most targeted industry for non-disclosure globally this year was the services industry (23 percent of all companies), followed by manufacturing (16 percent), materials (14 percent), infrastructure (10 percent) and fossil fuels (9 percent).

List of Indian Companies On the CDP Radar

OrganizationClimate change statusForests statusWater security status
Bajaj AutoDid not submitDid not submitDid not submit
Larsen & ToubroDid not submitDid not submitDid not submit
Reliance IndustriesDid not submitDid not submitDid not submit
Dabur IndiaDid not submitDid not submitDid not submit
Maruti Suzuki IndiaDid not submitDid not submitDid not submit
Godrej Consumer ProductsSubmittedDid not submitDid not submit
Asian PaintsDid not submitNot requestedDid not submit
Oil & Natural GasDid not submitNot requestedDid not submit
Bharat Petroleum CorporationSubmittedNot requestedDid not submit
JSW EnergySubmittedNot requestedDid not submit
NTPC LtdSubmittedNot requestedDid not submit
Shree CementSubmittedNot requestedDid not submit
Tata Global BeveragesSubmittedNot requestedDid not submit
Tata Power CoSubmittedNot requestedDid not submit
Ultratech CementSubmittedNot requestedDid not submit
Grasim IndustriesDid not submitDid not submitNot requested
Titan CompanySubmittedDid not submitNot requested
Apollo Hospitals EnterprisesDid not submitNot requestedNot requested
Bharti Infratel LimitedDid not submitNot requestedNot requested
Century Textiles & IndustriesDid not submitNot requestedNot requested

Table Source: https://www.downtoearth.org.in/blog/environment/investors-accuse-37-indian-companies-of-hiding-environmental-impact-information-71670

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