PricewaterhouseCoopers surveyed senior executives and managers of 140 large US-based companies to determine their attitudes and approaches towards sustainability — a new standard of corporate performance that moves beyond evaluation of short-term business goals to evaluation of long-term social, economic, and environmental impacts of corporate activity. The goal was to provide insight into the US business community’s understanding and development of sustainability business practice. Respondents represented a broad range of industries including chemicals, utilities, electronics, technology, manufacturing, consumer products, and paper and packaging.
The key findings are:
* The vast majority of US companies that are committing to sustainability are doing so to enhance or protect their reputations (90%).
* However, for a variety of reasons, these companies are not incorporating sustainability-related risks into their operational, project, investment, transaction, or other internal evaluation processes.
* These companies are unable to evaluate and protect their reputations and financial conditions from damage if they run afoul of sustainability issues.
* The financial damages can be substantial including lower stock prices, reduced access to capital, legal damages, and more.