The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) has pioneered a global system that collects information about corporate behavior on climate change and water scarcity, on behalf of market forces from shareholders to purchasing corporations. An independent non-profit organization, it has the largest global collection of self-reported corporate data on climate change. As one of the fastest growing economies in the world, it is important that India transitions to a low-carbon economy. Companies that can demonstrate effective management of material climate risks including those from regulatory, physical and other sources are likely to be a more attractive long-term investment proposition.
The past few years has seen India take multilateral steps to deal with the various aspects of climate change. More Indian companies are voluntarily stepping forward to mitigate their environmental impact instead of waiting for government regulations. From energy-saving initiatives to water conservation, greening exercises and waste management, Essar ventures have been consistent in their commitment to reducing their carbon footprint and to protecting the environment. As such, it is not surprising that Essar’s Group companies should step up to voluntarily disclose their climate change information. CDP’s annual report (2012) shows Essar Oil, Essar Power and Essar Steel as having responded to the CDP information request, even though the latter two companies are not part of the sample 200 companies.
Essar Oil, one of the sample companies, topped the Indian Energy sector with a CDLI score of 72 out of the possible 100 in CDP’s Climate Change Report 2012. This is the second consecutive year that Essar Oil has achieved the distinction of topping the disclosure score. “We will continue to play a leading role in sustainability by reducing emissions of greenhouse gases and would continue to maintain best practices in the energy sector in India," said Mr LK Gupta, MD and CEO, Essar Oil,
Essar Steel has been providing information to CDP since 2008. In fact, in 2012, in a proactive effort to provide its stakeholders with accurate information, Essar Steel collaborated with CDP to evaluate its greenhouse gases’ performance through on-demand scoring.
With a Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI) score of 80 out of a possible 100, Essar Steel topped all responding companies in the Materials category and came fifth among the 53 companies that participated in the program. Essar Steel’s management of its carbon footprint, and its contribution to a cleaner and greener environment was lauded at the launch of the CDP Report. The company’s high scores prompted CDP (India) director Damandeep Singh to make a special mention of Essar Steel in his presentation.
This recognition of its commitment to the environment has only strengthened Essar Steel’s resolve to do better. ‘Reducing greenhouse gas emission levels and carbon management are priority issues for the company’, said Dilip Oomen, CEO and MD, Essar Steel.