S.L. van Wateringen
- Environmental reporting by the Fortune Global 250: exploring the influence of nationality and sector
- Business Strategy and the Environment
- Volume | Issue number
- 10 | 1
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB)
- Amsterdam Business School Research Institute (ABS-RI)
While research on environmental reporting frequently includes large multinational enterprises, the number of surveys that systematically analyses a whole set of such firms, including the non-reporters, is limited and mainly focuses on the United States. This article presents the state of environmental reporting by the Fortune global 250, all large multinationals with a potentially large impact on other firms. Of these 250 firms, 35% has a recent environmental report, with another 32% publishing other types of environmental information. Reporting frequencies between the financial and non-financial sector differed considerably with 15% and 44% respectively. Besides an analysis of the number and contents of environmental reports, the importance of sectoral differences and firms nationality is also considered. A framework is developed which posits the existence of reporting legislation in firms home countries (some in place/pending, or none) against the direct environmental impact of the sector (large or small). The results of the analysis fit partially in this framework. Only a small number of reporting firms originates from countries with some kind of legislation (particularly the Netherlands), but national societal pressure seems to play a large role (especially in the UK, the Netherlands and Germany). Many operate in sectors with a substantial direct environmental impact (chemicals, pharmaceuticals, oil, and motor vehicles and parts); reporting in sectors with more indirect effects is getting off the ground.
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