| NEW YORK, Sept 11
NEW YORK, Sept 11 An organization promoting the
reduction of greenhouse gases said its annual survey showed big
U.S.-listed companies making progress in disclosure and in their
carbon emission reduction goals, even as lawmakers hesitate to
The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) said its 2012 survey
showed a growing number of top-tier executives and company
boards of the 500 top publicly traded U.S. companies were
directly overseeing their firms' climate change strategies.
Of the S&P 500, 338 firms participated in this year's survey
by the CDP, which provides a system for companies and cities to
measure and disclose environmental information.
Companies that ranked highly for their climate disclosures
in the CDP's index were Microsoft Corp, United Parcel
Service, Hess Corp, Pepco Holdings and
Sempra Energy Utilities.
The results "highlight a tipping point" in actions taken by
corporate boardrooms to address the physical risks of climate
change in their overall business goals "despite a lack of
comprehensive regulatory requirements," according to the survey
report co-written by CDP and professional services firm PwC.
The report comes just a day after the National Climate Data
Center said the first eight months of 2012 have been the warmest
of any year on record in the United States.
Eighty-one percent of reporting companies identified
physical risk from climate change, with 37 percent considering
the risks "a real and present danger" - up from 10 percent in
Of the survey's respondents, 92 percent reported that their
company's board or high-level executive had oversight over
climate strategies, up six percentage points from 2011.
Eighty-three percent of those respondents said that climate
change had been factored into corporate risk management
strategies compared to 75 percent (254) the previous year.
Doug Kangos, partner at PwC's Sustainable Business Solutions
and an author of the annual CDP reports, said this confirms
that the climate issue has transformed from being a company
marketing issue to a major boardroom issue.
"Companies have finally said this is more than just an
ancillary issue that a few of my marketing people want to focus
on. They have acknowledged that this is real for my business,"
Kangos told Reuters in an interview.
He said that unlike Congress, where there is ambivalence or
skepticism over the need to regulate carbon, companies have
stepped in to address the issue regardless of whether they
believe humans cause climate change because it poses major
"Particularly in this country, the private sector doesn't
sit around and wait for government," he said.