UNEP 2013 Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate

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02 Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting. Acknowledgements,Supervision and coordination Peer reviewers. Elisa Tonda We would like to thank the following for their. Head of Unit valuable inputs during the peer review process. Business and Industry Unit, Sustainable Consumption and Production Branch Helle Bank Jorgenson B Accountability. UNEP Division of Technology Industry and Economics Claire Bataillie Ministry of Ecology. Sustainable Development and Energy,Lead authors Genevieve Besse Ministry of Ecology. Lois Guthrie CDSB Sustainable Development and Energy France. Mardi McBrien CDSB Pierrick Billan Ministry of Ecology. Dr Jarlath Molloy CDSB Sustainable Development and Energy France. Michel Doucin Ministry of Foreign Affairs France, Technical Support editing Paul Hohnen Sustainability Strategies. and support to coordination Jeannet Lingan Stakeholder Forum. Sarah Billens UNEP Consultant Daniel Malan Stellenbosch University. Anthony Miller UNCTAD,Technical Support Justin Perrettson Novozymes.
Pietro Bertazzi GRI David Pitt Watson London Business School. Jack Boulter GRI Tlou Ramaru Environmental Affairs Department South Africa. Thomas Haueter GRI Rune Skovgaard Danish Business Authority Denmark. Teresa Fogelberg GRI Philippe Supplisson Ministry of Ecology. Yuki Yasui UNEP FI Sustainable Development and Energy France. Thiago Uehara Ministry of the Environment Brazil,Cornis Van der Lugt Independent Consultant. Copyright United Nations Environment Programme 2013. This publication may be reproduced in whole or in part and in. any form for educational or non profit purposes without special. permission from the copyright holder provided acknowledgement. of the source is made UNEP would appreciate receiving a copy. of any publication that uses this publication as a source. No use of this publication may be made for resale or for any. other commercial purpose whatsoever without prior permission. in writing from the United Nations Environment Programme. Disclaimer The designations employed and the presentation of. the material in this publication do not imply the expression of any. opinion whatsoever on the part of the United Nations Environment. Programme concerning the legal status of any country territory. city or area or of its authorities or concerning delimitation of. its frontiers or boundaries Moreover the views expressed do. not necessarily represent the decision or the stated policy of. the United Nations Environment Programme nor does citing of. trade names or commercial processes constitute endorsement. Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting 03. Introduction, This document contributes to the work of the Group of Friends. of Paragraph 47 GoF47 and its Secretariat provided by the. United Nations Environment Programme UNEP and the Paragraph 47 of. Global Reporting Initiative GRI The document seeks to. provide context for the work of the GoF47 and to support. The Future We Want, other Governments by addressing the key questions they. are asking about corporate sustainability reporting We acknowledge the importance of corporate. The Governments of Brazil Denmark France and South Africa sustainability reporting and encourage companies. formed the GoF47 in June 2012 following the United Nations where appropriate especially publicly listed. Conference on Sustainable Development UNCSD also known and large companies to consider integrating. as Rio 20 Paragraph 47 of the outcome document known. as The future we want acknowledged the importance of sustainability information into their reporting. corporate sustainability reporting1 The founding member cycle We encourage industry interested. Governments are pioneers in the promotion of sustainability Governments and relevant stakeholders. reporting practice and policy and this publication builds on. their experience as well as input from relevant stakeholders with the support of the United Nations system. as appropriate to develop models for best, The GoF47 charter2 explains the Group s commitment to. promoting and supporting corporate sustainability reporting practice and facilitate action for the integration. as follows of sustainability reporting taking into account. experiences from already existing frameworks,and paying particular attention to the needs.
We have drawn lessons from the environmental, social and economic crises of recent decades of developing countries including for. and acknowledge that we face challenges such capacity building. as climate change depletion of natural resources,population growth inequality and poverty These. challenges can be addressed by collaborative work The focus of this document is on sustainability reporting3 by. by all actors concerned and by fostering a culture the private sector whose contribution to the achievement of. sustainable development objectives is recognised in paragraph. of transparency accountability and trust In, 46 of The future we want 1 Although not all companies. developing such a culture we believe sustainability and or organisations are incorporated the term corporate. reporting has a major role to play sustainability reporting is used in this document to describe. reporting by the private sector, Examples of activity to advance sustainability reporting and. This document is divided into three sections The first sets those leading these activities are provided in this publication. out the background to sustainability reporting and introduces However as this publication aims to provide general context. readers to what it is who is involved in developing it and why for the work of GoF47 it does not provide a full inventory of all. it is important for the global sustainability agenda Section 2 initiatives on sustainability reporting and the examples given in. provides an overview of current sustainability reporting policies this document are not comprehensive or selected according to. initiatives and practices Section 3 focuses on the opportunities a particular methodology For a more comprehensive overview. for GoF47 and others to develop corporate sustainability of sustainability reporting initiatives around the world readers. reporting further should refer to the Carrots and Sticks series4. 1 UN Conference on Sustainable Development 2012 Outcome document The future we want. available at http sustainabledevelopment un org futurewewant html 3 Defined in the answer to FAQ 2. 2 UNEP 2012 Group of Friends of Paragraph 47 charter available at www unep org resourceefficiency 4 GRI et al 2013 Carrots and sticks available at www globalreporting org reporting reporting support publications. Business SustainableandResponsibleBusiness Reporting FriendsofParagraph47 tabid 105011 Default aspx research and development publications Pages default aspx. 04 Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting. Introduction 03,Section 1 Context and Background 06.
01 Why is corporate sustainability reporting relevant. for the global sustainability agenda 07,02 What is corporate sustainability reporting 08. 03 What type of information is normally included in sustainability reporting 09. 04 Who is contributing to the sustainability reporting policy agenda 10. 05 Why do companies produce corporate sustainability reports 11. 06 What are the benefits of sustainability reporting 12. 07 What are the guiding principles for sustainability reporting 13. Section 2 Current Practice 14, 08 What are Governments doing to support and promote 15. corporate sustainability reporting and why, 09 How many businesses currently prepare sustainability reports 16. 10 Do small and medium sized enterprises prepare sustainability reports 17. 11 What are the steps involved in corporate sustainability reporting 18. 12 What are the costs and internal efforts involved 20. for companies preparing sustainability reports, 13 What voluntary initiatives and frameworks already. exist to assist companies with corporate sustainability reporting 21. 14 How does integrated reporting fit in 22, 15 Do companies have their sustainability reports 23.
assured or verified and if so how, Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting 05. Section 3 Opportunities for Further Development and 25. Increased Uptake of Corporate Sustainability Reporting. 16 What are the opportunities for developing the progress 26. that has already been made in sustainability reporting. 17 What are the policy options for introducing and building 27. capacity in sustainability reporting, 18 What activities could complement and support 28. policy options and actions,19 What can investors do 29. 20 What are the opportunities for developing technical and 30. implementation aspects of corporate sustainability reporting. Acronyms 31,Context and Background, Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting 07. 01 Why is corporate sustainability reporting,relevant for the global sustainability agenda.
Businesses have an important role in driving and investing In 1992 the UN Conference on Environment and Development. in innovation to meet the requirements of sustainable UNCED held in Rio de Janeiro endorsed the first global call to. development and in reporting to decision makers about the promote sustainable consumption and production recognising. way in which their activities contribute to the global environmental management openness including environmental. sustainability agenda reporting by corporations and public dialogue as among. the highest corporate priorities and as a key determinant to. The report of the UN Secretary General s High Level panel on sustainable development 6. Global Sustainability5 describes the global sustainability agenda. as aiming to eradicate poverty reduce inequality make growth A decade later in 2002 the outcome document from the. inclusive and production and consumption more sustainable World Summit on Sustainable Development WSSD the. whilst combating climate change and respecting a range of Johannesburg Plan of Implementation7 endorsed sustainability. other planetary boundaries In order to achieve the objectives reporting and encouraged businesses to use the GRI s. of the global sustainability agenda deep structural changes Sustainability Reporting Framework8 which includes the. are needed in the ways that societies manage their social and GRI Sustainability Reporting Guidelines. environmental affairs and hard choices are needed to move. from talk to action The success of those changes decisions 2012 Paragraph 47 of the Rio 20 outcome document1 builds. and actions depends in part on the quality of information on the first Rio conference in 1992 and the subsequent World. available to guide them Summit on Sustainable Development in 2002 It highlights the. role of corporate sustainability reporting in enhancing the private. Paragraph 46 of the Rio 20 outcome document1 recognises sector s contribution to sustainable development and calls on. that the active participation of the private sector can contribute companies to consider integrating sustainability information into. to the achievement of sustainable development including their existing reporting practices Further it calls for industry. through the important tool of public private partnerships Governments the UN and other relevant stakeholders to engage. to further enhance sustainability reporting, The relevance of corporate sustainability reporting for the. global sustainability agenda has been highlighted in UN. conferences on sustainable development over the last two. decades including, 5 UN High Level Panel on Global Sustainability 2012 Resilient People Resilient Planet A Future Worth 7 WSSD 2002 Johannesburg Plan of Implementation available at www johannesburgsummit org html. Choosing available at www un org gsp documents summit docs 2309 planfinal htm. 6 UNCED 1992 Agenda 21 paragraph 30 3 available at www sustainabledevelopment un org content 8 GRI 2013 Reporting Framework Overview available at www globalreporting org reporting reporting. documents Agenda21 pdf framework overview Pages default aspx. 08 Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting. 02 What is corporate,sustainability reporting, Corporate sustainability reporting communicates information that. is relevant for understanding a company s long term economic The GoF47 charter2 offers another perspective. value and contribution towards a sustainable global economy by. taking account of the company s economic environmental social We understand sustainability reporting as the. and governance performance and impacts disclosure of information concerning the significant. Corporate sustainability reporting is an emerging discipline for economic social environmental and governance. which there is currently no universally agreed definition In the impacts and performance of a company. most recently published generation of the GRI Sustainability. Reporting Guidelines G4 9 sustainability reporting is defined as. a process that assists companies in setting goals measuring recognises them as complementary to but distinct from. performance and managing change towards a sustainable global financial reporting However as decisions about sustainability. economy one that combines long term profitability with social may impact and be affected by the financial performance and. responsibility and environmental care Sustainability re. companies to consider integrating sustainability information into their existing reporting practices Further it calls for industry Governments the UN and other relevant stakeholders to engage to further enhance sustainability reporting Frequently Asked Questions on Corporate Sustainability Reporting 07

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