18 Sustainability reports make short list for Ceres – ACCA reporting awards

Source: CERES, 8 January 2005

Ceres and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) today announced the shortlist of 18 reports for the Ceres-ACCA North American Sustainability Reporting Awards 2004 program, out of 66 applications received from US and Canadian companies.
The 18 reports are those submitted by:

3M (US)
Baxter International (US)
Bristol-Myers Squibb (US)
Citigroup (US)
Dofasco (CA)
Enbridge (CA)
Ford Motor Company (US)
The Gap (US)
General Motors (US)
Hewlett-Packard (US)
McDonalds (US)
Placer Dome (CA)
Potash (CA)
Seventh Generation (US) (SM)
Talisman (CA)
Transalta (CA)
VanCity Savings (CA)
YSI, Inc. (US) (SM)

(SM = small and medium sized company)

The purpose of the awards program is to contribute to reporting on sustainability, environmental and social issues by United States, Canadian and Mexican corporations and other organizations by rewarding best practice and providing guidance to other entities that are publishing or intend to publish sustainability reports. For 12 years, ACCA has held annual awards — first in the UK and now in more than 20 countries to promote transparency in reporting the impact of business activities on sustainable development.

Ceres and ACCA received 66 reporting award applications from 63 companies, including 46 sustainability reports, 14 environmental reports and six social reports. All of the 18 reports which were selected for further consideration by the full judges panel that meets next month were in the sustainability reporting category, including two in the small and medium sized business category (SM). The judges found that the social and environmental reporting within sustainability reports exceeded the quality of the environmental or social reporting done in free-standing reports. While no Mexican reports were submitted for consideration this year, the program has raised awareness of sustainability issues with Mexican businesses and non-governmental organizations which will continue.

Lynn Beauregard, Administrative Director at ACCA Canada, said: "ACCA is encouraged to see a wide range of sectors make the shortlist this year, including natural resources-based manufacturing, high-tech industry, financial services and retailing. These organizations have made the sensible business decision to be more accountable to their stakeholders by reporting publicly.

Ceres Executive Director Mindy Lubber said: "The Ceres-ACCA Reporting Awards recognize those organizations that report environmental, social or sustainability information in the most complete and credible way. We do not reward rhetoric. We are looking for organizations that comprehensively document their key impacts, set a vision and targets for future progress and clearly explain changes in performance, positive or negative. The Ceres-ACCA judging panel now has the difficult task of selecting the 2004 winners from this high quality shortlist.

The winners will be announced at an ACCA Canada Sustainability Forum on 7 April 2005 in Toronto and at the Ceres Annual Conference on April 13-14, 2005 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Boston.

For more information, call Debra Hall, Ceres at 617-247-0700 x22 or Nigel Hall, ACCA Canada at 416 966-2225 or visit www.ceres.org or www.accaglobal.com/sustainability.

Ceres-ACCA Reporting Awards Judges Panel
Dr. Julie Fox Gorte, Director of Social Research
Calvert Group

Katie Fry Hester, Advisor

Hannah Riley Bowles, Assistant Professor of Public Policy
John F. Kennedy School of Government
Harvard University

Steve Lydenberg, Chief Investment Officer
Domini Social Investments

Katherine Partridge, President and Senior Partner
Stakeholder Research Associates Canada

David Greenall, Senior Advisor, Governance and Corporate Social Responsibility
The Conference Board of Canada

John Chibuk, Chief, Sustainable Development
Industry Canada

Elizabeth Everhardus, Manager of Communications and Senior Project Manager
Pollution Probe