Canadian firms show some climate change leadership
Conference Board of Canada releases results of the 2010 Carbon Disclosure Project report.
Photo: Conference Board of Canada
TORONTO: Canadian companies are lagging firms in other countries setting carbon emissions-reduction targets and obtaining third-party verification of their actions, according to the 2010 Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) report released by the Conference Board of Canada.
The CDP asked 4,700 of the world’s largest companies, including 200 publicly traded Canadian companies, to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions and climate change strategies. Of the Canadian companies, 92 responded. When compared to other countries, the Conference Board said their rankings have improved in: engagement with policy makers on climate change; overall response rate; and the percentage of respondents seeing regulatory risks and opportunities.
Canadian companies continue to have mid-level rankings in having board-level governance and management incentives for climate change in place, but they’re lagging in setting emission reduction targets, and having emissions data verified by external parties.
“One possible reason for Canada’s lower international ranking in these areas is the absence of firm climate change policies in North America, compared to the more established regimes in place in Europe and Scandinavia,” said Gilles Rhéaume, the vice-president of public policy for the Ottawa-based Conference Board.
The worldwide results show large greenhouse gas (GHG) emitting companies are more likely to have comprehensive climate change strategies in place. In high-GHG emitting sectors, the report shows 70% of respondents are taking or planning action on climate change opportunities, compared to 58% from sectors with low emissions.
The CDP also recognizes 15 Canadian companies that demonstrate exceptional disclosure practices as Carbon Disclosure Leaders. They include:
• ARC Energy Trust
• Bank of Montreal
• Barrick Gold
• Cameco Corp.
• Cenovus Energy
• Emera Inc.
• National Bank of Canada
• Pason Systems
• Russell Metals
• Telus Corporation
• The Royal Bank of Canada
• TransAlta Corp.
Click here for a copy of the report.