Most Companies Now Report on Sustainability

Date: December 4, 2020

Source: KPMG

Most companies, some 80 percent globally, now report on their steps towards sustainability, according to a recent survey by industry consultant KPMG. That's up from just 18 percent in the early 2000s. "Sustainability reporting is now so nearly universally adopted that the small minority of companies not yet reporting will find themselves seriously out of step with global norms," says Adrian King, a KPMG partner. He points out that companies today are motivated by new laws and regulations, an increasing understanding of the financial risks posed by climate change, and their recognition that environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues can affect corporate value. 65 percent of large companies seek to reduce their carbon footprint, up 15 percent over the last three years.

From KPMG website:

This is the 11th edition of the KPMG Survey of Sustainability Reporting; the first edition was published in 1993. This year, KPMG professionals reviewed sustainability reporting from 5,200 companies in 52 countries and jurisdictions, making this the most extensive survey in the series to date.

The survey provides a detailed look at global trends in sustainability reporting and offers insights for business leaders, company boards and sustainability professionals. Its aim is to support those who have a responsibility for assessing and preparing their own organization's sustainability reporting.

The survey also serves as a guide to investors, asset managers and ratings agencies who now factor sustainability or Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) information into their assessment of corporate performance and risk.

It is based on several months of research by sustainability professionals at KPMG firms who analyzed thousands of corporate reports and websites.

In 2020, the survey focused on four key aspects of sustainability reporting:

  • Key global trends in sustainability reporting

  • Reporting on the risks of biodiversity loss

  • Reporting on climate-related risk and carbon reduction

  • Reporting on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The report itself:

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