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Responsible Corporate Engagement on Climate Change Policy


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These slides were presented at the Sustainable Brands London 2013 Conference, to view the associated video or listen to the audio of the presentation please visit …

These slides were presented at the Sustainable Brands London 2013 Conference, to view the associated video or listen to the audio of the presentation please visit

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  • 1. Supporting Responsible Corporate Engagement on Climate Change Policy 19th November 2013 Paul Dickinson, CDP | @CDP Page 2
  • 2. What is CDP? A not-for-profit that has pioneered, and provides, the only global natural capital disclosure; and  A system for companies and cities to measure and manage their environmental risks; and  A means to recognise cost savings and financial opportunities created by reducing impacts on natural resources. Page 3 | @CDP
  • 3. How does it work? Investors and purchasers Information Authority Information Corporations Page 4 | @CDP Authority
  • 4. Key CDP Facts  CDP has an investor mandate from institutional investors that manage 78 trillion dollars in assets  81% of the world’s largest corporations use CDP to disclose vital environmental information to investors and major purchasers Over 4100 companies report to our Climate Change programme; 593 to CDP water; 100+ to CDP forests (pending upcoming report), and 60 through the supply chain programme. Page 5 | @CDP
  • 5. Why CDP requests disclosure on corporate influence over climate legislation | @CDP Page 6
  • 6. Why CDP became concerned with undue legislative influence "There is a serious group of companies that have a voice that is much louder, that is better funded, that operates much more in unison and that is still stuck in the technologies and the fuels of yesterday…. From our perspective what we really need from visionary companies such as all of you is to have a very active engagement with the policy makers who decide the policy at home and the international policy” CDP Global Forum, September 2011 Page 7 | @CDP Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC
  • 7.  Compared with companies’ efforts to green their operations, corporate political actions such as lobbying can have more influence on environmental protection and arguably represent the greatest impact a company can have on the environment. Professor Michael Toffel, Harvard Business School | @CDP Page 8 
  • 8. Following consultation, the indentified key areas of corporate influence Direct influence Trade associations This includes influence through lobbying, law Primary research informed us that trade firms, public affairs agencies, consultations, associations were the most powerful influencers working groups, technical advice over climate legislation Direct Production of research Internal consistency The funding of research institutions, think tanks Many international corporations lack knowledge and other consultancies etc. is key in informing of the multitude of differing and often contradictory public debate and knowledge on climate change ways they may be influencing legislation in different geographies Page 9 | @CDP
  • 9. What can we learn from the report: ‘Guide for Responsible Corporate Engagement in Climate Policy’? | @CDP Page 10
  • 10. What methodology was used?  13 studies or guides that offer principles, analysis and recommendations for responsible corporate policy engagement;  Nearly 75 individuals from more than 60 organizations (across 20 countries) helped inform this report;  Data from CDP 2013 Questionnaire, the UN Global Compact, Implementation Survey, and The Caring for Climate Progress Report 2013. Page 11 | @CDP
  • 11. Five Core Elements of Responsible Engagement Legitimacy Opportunity Consistency Accountability Transparency • Building trust; • Recognizing • Staying true to • Responsibility • Making • Doing no harm risk mitigation, climate science to all company views, (Climate risk); competitive and objective stakeholders; intentions, • Genuine advantages and analysis; • Broad activities, interest in policy future industry • Aligning public perspective due influences, and outcomes; transitions. and private diligence; outcomes on • Defining a messages • Managing climate policy material interest. across space. inconsistencies. public. Page 12 | @CDP
  • 12. Proposed practical solutions for corporations to take  Identify Inventory influences, risks and internal opportunities with internal and external experts  Align Complete internal audit to ensure consistent positions, strategies, investments  Report Disclose company’s climate positions, actions and outcomes Page 13 | @CDP
  • 13. Business as a positive voice on climate policy  Companies can provide proactive, constructive business input in order to help governments create effective climate policies;  The guide can form the basis for companies to be internally and externally consistent with their corporate policy positions;  Supportive investors and other stakeholders have expressed the urgent need for business to be more involved. Page 14 | @CDP
  • 14. Global 500 findings from CDP’s climate change program 2013 | @CDP Page 15
  • 15. The means through which the Global 500 influence climate legislation Number of Global 500 companies 350 300 250 200 150 100 50 0 . Trade associations Direct enagegement Funding research Page 16 | @CDP Other No influence
  • 16. How Global 500 companies choose to engage with climate legislation Number of Global 500 companies 300 250 200 150 100 50 0 Direct enagagment Offical government with response policylegislation Coalition enagagment Contribution to independent review Page 17 | @CDP Host or sponsor public advent or awards Attendence of conferences
  • 17. The position of CDP disclosers towards climate legislation Carbon tax Climate Finance Support and, support with minor exceptions Adaption Resiliency Support with major exceptions Cap and Trade Mandatory Carbon Reporting Oppose Clean Energy Generation Energy Efficency 0 50 100 150 200 Number of companies that disclose to CDP Page 18 | @CDP 250 300 350 400 450 500
  • 18. Number of companies How the Global 500 influence their trade associations over climate policy 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Working Groups Member of Active Technical Promotion of Directly board or membership advice or legislative influencing chairmanship submission agenda policy of research papers Page 19 | @CDP Supporting Establishing Funding all positions or promoting beyond an initiative membership or concept
  • 19. Are trade associations consistent with company’s climate policies? Inconsistent Companies disclosing to CDP Unknown Mixed Global 500 Consistent 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% Percentage of responding companies Page 20 | @CDP 70% 80% 90%
  • 20. Do companies publically disclose a list of all of the  research organisations that they fund? Percentage of responding companies e Corporate funding of public work on climate change Only a small majority of CDP 60% disclosers state they publish a 50% list of all the research they 40% fund; Global 500 30% 20% All CDP disclosing companies 10%  Although they accept this research could be either directly or indirectly be influencing climate legislation 0% Yes No . Page 21 | @CDP
  • 21. Key findings from CDP corporate information request  Companies are reluctant to admit lobbying against effective climate change policy, or being associated with trade groups that do so;  There are a group of around 20 trade associations corporations identified as actively working against climate legislation; and  Corporations consider themselves more supportive of climate legislation then their trade associations;  Although many responses were cautious, CDP’s experience suggests disclosure rates and performance improves over time. Page 22 | @CDP
  • 22. Key findings, continued  Disclosure rates were low compared to other questions on corporate political influence;  Companies are particularly reluctant to disclosure information on the organisations or research they fund; especially if fund recipients may be challenging the scientific consensus on climate change; and  Disclosure was informative about good corporate environmental behaviour, although often lacked substance about potential undue influence. Page 23 | @CDP
  • 23. Conclusions | @CDP Page 24
  • 24. What conclusions can CDP draw from this year’s disclosure?  Corporations are starting to accept the need to be transparent over the influence they can exert over the development of climate policy; and  More pressure from civil society and investors necessary to help drive greater transparency and behaviour change;  However, right now, we need the progressive voice of business to step up and pave the way towards a new global deal in time for 2015. Page 25 | @CDP
  • 25. ‘Guide for responsible engagement in climate policy’, partners: Page 26 | @CDP
  • 26. For further details, please contact: Paul Dickinson Ben Watson Executive Chairman Senior Manager Government Relations | @CDP Page 27