- 90% of the 119 companies from Australia and New Zealand that report through CDP have board-level oversight on climate-related issues
- 69% of these companies report having integrated company-wide processes for identifying, assessing, and managing climate-related issues in their overall risk management, a rate higher than the wider Asia Pacific average (54%)
- Australia and New Zealand have the highest rate (58%) of companies across the Asia Pacific that report using climate-related scenario analysis to inform their business strategies
- Over 60% of companies report engaging with both upstream and downstream stakeholders on climate-related issues, well above the Asia Pacific average (34%)
- A nearly tripled year-on-year increase in the number of science-based targets in Australia and New Zealand, suggesting an emerging sub-regional leadership towards science-based climate action
- Dexus Property Group, Stockland, Telstra Corporation, and Vicinity Centres from Australia have been named among 181 companies on CDP’s prestigious ‘A List’ for their climate transparency and action
March 31, 2020, Hong Kong: Companies in Australia and New Zealand demonstrate corporate environmental leadership within the Asia Pacific region (APAC) and can take the lead on implementing climate initiatives in line with the Paris Agreement, according to a new analysis from the global environmental non-profit CDP.
CDP’s latest analysis, Towards Climate-Resilient Growth: Asia Pacific’s Ambition Gap, analyzes self-reported data from 2,511 companies across the region in 2019 – including 119 from the sub-region comprising Australia and New Zealand - and identifies key trends and progress on corporate climate action at geographic level, as well as the challenges in ramping up ambition, transparency, and best practices.
Companies in Australia and New Zealand are emerging as leaders in environmental action. The number of companies that have set or committed to set climate targets in line with science has nearly tripled in one year, to 17 in 2019, and continues to rise since. Although these numbers are still developing, the strong uptake in corporate commitments signals a wider recognition among companies on the need to meet the Paris Agreement’s goals.
The following decade will be a testament to whether these ambitious targets set by companies can translate to on-the-ground climate action. CDP's analysis shows that companies need to step up their current level of action in order to rise to the challenges of the low-carbon transition. For instance, only 39% of the companies in Australia and New Zealand reported a year on year decrease in direct and energy-based (scope 1 and 2) emissions.
Companies in Australia and New Zealand demonstrate high awareness of climate issues: 90% of companies that responded to CDP have board-level oversight on managing climate-related risks and opportunities. Monetary incentives at board-level are known to help drive the focus on climate-related key performance indicators and yield results. However, only 19% have monetary incentives in place for their C-suites or above that are tied to environmental projects or targets, including emissions reductions, energy saving, or supply chain engagement.
CDP’s new research shows that companies in Australia and New Zealand are actively engaging in climate risk management in their business models. Of the risks identified, 58% are physical risks, mostly associated with increased severity of extreme weather events and their adverse effects on business operations. 69% of companies report having an active integration of climate-related issues into their multi-disciplinary company-wide risk management processes, a rate higher than the wider APAC average of 54%. Moreover, over half (58%) of the responders are already using climate-related scenario analysis to inform their business strategies and among the companies that have yet to use scenario analysis, 72% anticipate doing so by 2021.
Companies have also begun identifying and developing market opportunities in line with the transition to a low carbon economy. Of the opportunities identified by companies, 40% related to new products and services.
Engagement with supply chains remains a key element of overall climate risk management. CDP’s global analysis on 125 organizations representing US$3.6 trillion of procurement spend finds that supply chain emissions are on average 5.5 times as high as a company’s directly accountable emissions, making multi-stakeholder engagement across the value chains critical in achieving global net-zero GHG pathway. Corporate responders in Australia and New Zealand are more engaged in this regard in comparison to the companies in rest of APAC, with over 60% reporting engagement on climate-related issues with both their upstream stakeholders and downstream suppliers against a wider APAC average of 34%.
2019 has seen the continued rise in environmental stewardship among corporates in the region, with 54 companies in APAC recently named among 181 companies on CDP’s prestigious ‘climate change A List’, including Dexus Property Group, Stockland, Telstra Corporation, and Vicinity Centres from Australia. These however account for only 2% out of the 8,400 companies that respond through CDP globally and underscores the need for more companies to fully address climate-related issues in their operations as well as supply chains.
Pratima Divgi, Director of Hong Kong, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand at CDP, said: “2020 marks the start of a critical decade for laying the foundations to avoid the worst of the climate impacts. Addressing the gaps that currently exist between our actions and ambitions will be critical in our transformation to a low carbon economy by 2050. It is encouraging to see companies from Asia Pacific take the necessary steps to climate actions and demonstrate strong leadership. Much work needs to be done in developing climate resiliency and CDP appreciates the involvement of business leaders across the region in our common goal towards a transformational change for a low carbon economy.”
Grant Kelley, CEO and Managing Director of Vicinity Centres, said: “We are thrilled and humbled to be recognised as a global leader for our response to climate change. Vicinity’s significant efforts to mitigate climate risk across its portfolio and prepare for the transition to a low-carbon economy were key factors in its inclusion in this year’s A List. As part of our Net Zero carbon emissions target by 2030 for our wholly owned retail assets, and by further integrating climate resilience into our business practices, we will continue to enhance our approach.”
David Yates, Executive General Manager, Sustainability of Dexus Property Group, said: “We are proud of our achievements in sustainability including this latest recognition by CDP for being a leader in addressing environmental risks and reducing our impact.”
Andrew Petersen, CEO of the Business Council of Sustainable Development Australia, commented: “The results align with the growing maturity in reporting non-financial information that we are seeing across our member business community. They are well on the path to establishing risk and resilience frameworks around climate action as an instrumental element to their non-financial performance which is increasingly important for investors and other key stakeholders.”
Notes to editor
The full analysis is available at: https://www.cdp.net/en/research/global-reports/asia-pacifics-ambition-gap
For more information, or exclusive interviews, please contact:
Crystal Chow, Communications Manager - Hong Kong, Southeast Asia, Australia & New Zealand, CDP
Tel. +852 9301 5004 | e : [email protected]
CDP is an international non-profit that drives companies and governments to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, safeguard water resources and protect forests. Voted number one climate research provider by investors and working with institutional investors with assets of US$96 trillion, we leverage investor and buyer power to motivate companies to disclose and manage their environmental impacts. Over 8,400 companies with over 50% of global market capitalization disclosed environmental data through CDP in 2019. This is in addition to the over 920 cities, states and regions who disclosed, making CDP’s platform one of the richest sources of information globally on how companies and governments are driving environmental change. CDP is a founding member of the We Mean Business Coalition.
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