Irish firms must go green or risk business

12 Feb 2010

Irish companies have been warned in a recent report that unless they begin to manage carbon emissions, they will risk relationships with customers and investors.

The second annual CDP Supply Chain Report from the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) summarises climate-change information from 710 suppliers of global companies such as Dell, GlaxoSmithKline, Google, IBM, Pepsico and Vodafone. It reveals that 56pc of leading companies expect to deselect suppliers in the future for failing to meet their carbon-management criteria.

No longer a ‘nice to have’
The report says Irish suppliers are now expected by some of their global customers to demonstrate greenhouse gas emissions management, awareness and action.

“It is clear that some leading global companies now require suppliers to address carbon management as a core business issue. This is no longer a ‘nice to have’ for the leaders, it is becoming a ‘need to have’ and we expect to see this trend growing across the Irish business sector,” said Dick Budden, director of the Carbon Disclosure Project in Ireland. 

Call to action
CDP Ireland is this week calling on the country’s largest companies, with the launch of the CDP 2010 initiative, to report carbon emissions and detail how climate change affects their businesses. 

Three Irish investment funds – Irish Life and Permanent Investment Managers, Harbourmaster Capital and EEA Fund Managers – have agreed to be signatories to the CDP for the first time, joining the National Pension Reserve Fund which has been a signatory since 2007.

Requests to participate in the CDP 2010, signed on behalf of these funds and others from around the world with a total of more than US$64 trillion invested, are currently being posted to the 40 largest companies on the Irish Stock Exchange, together with the 10 largest of Ireland’s unlisted emitters of greenhouse gasses.

Last year, the first time the project had made specific requests to a sample of Irish companies, only 33pc responded, which compared poorly with more than 80pc in the global 500 largest companies.

“In 2010, I am confident the importance downstream business customers are now placing on carbon management, plus the increasing awareness of Irish investors, will focus the minds of management and result in a better response from Irish business,” Budden said.

More on Irish companies participating in the global Carbon Disclosure Project

Photo: Dick Budden, director of the Carbon Disclosure Project in Ireland

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