17 Feb Most Sustainable Companies In The World Honored At 2020 SEAL Sustainability Awards
February 18, 2021 – SEAL Awards today announced the winners of the 2020 SEAL Business Sustainability Awards, celebrating their leadership, transparency, and commitment to sustainable business practices.
Global brands like Burberry, Cisco, Colgate Palmolive, and Diageo were among those selected for the SEAL Organizational Impact Award. Selected by combining two premier ESG data sets – the CDP A-List ™ and the Corporate Sustainability Assessment (CSA, now part of S&P Global ESG Scores ™) – the 2020 SEAL Organizational Impact Award honors the 50 most sustainable companies globally.
Dow, General Motors, and Salesforce were among the organizations whose sustainability initiatives were recognized with a SEAL Environmental Initiative Award.
“Over the past five years, corporations have increased their investment in sustainable business practices, thereby raising the bar for ESG excellence,” commented Matt Harney, SEAL Awards’ Founder. “Our mission at SEAL is to rigorously assess and then celebrate extraordinary sustainability leadership. We’re honored to present these 2020 Sustainability Award winners.”
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The event featured two distinct sustainability award categories:
SEAL Environmental Initiative Award
This award honors specific environmental and sustainability initiatives. Key criteria for selection included: Impact Metrics, Innovation, Sharing of Insights, and Investment Levels.
The Environmental Initiative winners were:
- Dow, Kashi and Berry Global
- Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation
- Gaia Herbs
- General Motors (Honored For 2 Initiatives)
- GFL Environmental
- Green Standards
- Hypergiant Industries
- Nugget Markets
- Solo New York
Selected Environmental Initiative Award Winner Perspectives:
Dow, Kashi, and Berry Global: “We are honored to receive the SEAL Award for our breakthrough accomplishment with Berry Global and Kashi on the development of the fully recyclable package for the Bear Naked brand,” said Nestor de Mattos, North America Commercial Vice President Dow Packaging and Specialty Plastics. “Together, we designed an innovative solution that not only protects the product but is easily recyclable at over 18,000 retail locations nationwide ultimately reducing plastic waste in the environment. At Dow, we are committed to continue collaborating with our partners to drive improvements in industries processes and deliver a sustainable future.”
General Motors: “We are honored to receive SEAL Business Sustainability Awards for our commitment to source 100 percent of our electricity from renewable sources by 2030 in the U.S., and for our goal of using 100 percent sustainable packaging by 2030,” said Deborah Wahl, Chief Marketing Officer, General Motors. “We are committed to putting every driver in an electric vehicle on a scale previously unseen with a vision of zero emissions so that our children will inherit a healthier planet, which is why we’re committed to go all-electric by 2035. We have the solutions, capability, technology and scale to put everyone in an EV, and our recently revealed brand identity and campaign are designed to reflect this.”
Salesforce: “At Salesforce we believe business can be a powerful platform for change, and we know that companies that buy renewable energy can play an important role in accelerating the transition to a clean and renewable energy future,” said Patrick Flynn, VP of Sustainability at Salesforce. “We are honored to receive the SEAL Business Sustainability Award for our contributions to sustainability and innovative initiatives that aim to create systemic change at a scale the planet will notice. Salesforce was one of the first cloud companies to make a 100% renewable energy commitment, and we are proud to say we will reach that goal this year from new, additional renewable energy that we are helping bring to the grid.”
SEAL Organizational Impact Award
This award recognizes overall corporate sustainability performance and represents the 50 most sustainable companies globally.
Winners were selected by combining and ranking the aggregated results of two rigorous, world-class sustainability assessments – specifically, the recently released 2020 CDP A-List ™ and the Corporate Sustainability Assessment (now part of the S&P Global ESG family).
The Organizational Impact winners were:
- Asahi Group
- ASE Technology
- British American Tobacco
- Burberry Group
- Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company
- Colgate Palmolive
- Deutsche Telekom
- First Financial Holding
- Fubon Financial
- HP Enterprise
- Konica Minolta
- Koninklijke KPN
- Koninklijke Philips
- Nanya Technology Corp
- Naturgy Energy Group
- Nippon Telegraph & Telephone (NTT)
- Owens Corning
- PTT Global Chemical
- Red Electrica
- Schneider Electric
- Shinhan Financial Group
- Stanley Black & Decker
- Swiss Re
- Taiwan Mobile
- Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing
- Terna Rete Elettrica Nazionale
- True Corp
- UBS Group
- UPM-Kymmene OYJ
SEAL Organizational Impact Award – Methodology Discussion:
In our discussions with sustainability executives, we have consistently heard these understaffed departments are overburdened by ESG questionnaires and assessments. Of note, a European institutional investor we hosted at our office that was interested in SEAL’s perspective on ESG was quite surprised at the length, rigor, and scope inherent in the leading evaluations. We encourage you to review this sample questionnaire from the 2020 CSA.
Rather than create yet another assessment, SEAL Awards approach to this 2020 Business Sustainability Award is purely analytical and leverages existing ESG databases. Said another way, no company award entries were considered.
The CDP and Corporate Sustainability Assessment (CSA, now part of S&P Global) data sets were chosen based on their quality, rigor, and global coverage.
For further perspectives on the strength of the CDP and CSA, we encourage you to read SustainAbility’s 2019 report “Rate the Raters 2019: Expert Views on ESG Ratings.”
The SEAL Awards analysis used the “Climate Change” dimension of CDP’s 2019 A-List assessment, which represented a universe of 9,526 disclosing companies. The “Water Security” and “Forests” CDP dimensions were not considered due to smaller sample sizes.
This CDP data was combined with the most recent publicly available CSA / S&P Global ESG ratings, which covered 3,188 companies.
The SEAL Awards analyzed the distribution of rankings for each of CDP and CSA to determine a numerical equivalent score that captured an equal level of selectivity.
CDP A-List “Climate Change” alphabetical scores were converted as follows:
- “A” = 98 points
- “A-” = 92 points (reflecting “A-” scores position within the top 11.5% of the 9,526 disclosing companies)
- “B” = 83 points (reflecting “B” scores position within the top 22.0% of the 2020 CDP company universe)
These converted CDP scores were then combined directly with unadjusted CSA, which are presented on a 1 to 100 basis.
From this combined data set, the SEAL Awards ranked the 50 most sustainable companies in the world.
Consistent with SEAL’s organizational focus, our methodology reflects a 69% weighting on the environmental dimension. Importantly, the SEAL methodology does incorporate “Social” and “Governance” components, thereby elevating the holistic ESG performance required for award winners.
The following graphics summarize the SEAL Organizational Impact Award on a geographic and sector basis:
One hundred percent of the award entry fees were contributed to SEAL’s Environmental Impact Campaigns and ongoing Environmental Research Grant initiative, which has to date provided funding to 19 environmental researchers at institutions like UC-Berkeley, Duke, MIT, and UCLA.
ABOUT THE SEAL AWARDS
SEAL (Sustainability, Environmental Achievement & Leadership) Awards is an environmental advocacy organization that honors leadership through our business sustainability awards & environmental journalism awards while funding research and pursuing our own environmental impact campaigns.
The SEAL Awards core pillars are:
- Business Sustainability Awards – honors the most sustainable companies in the world, like Adidas, AMD, Cisco, and Tide
- Environmental Journalism Awards – representative past winners include journalists from Guardian, New York Times, and Grist
- Environmental Research Grants
SEAL Awards is not affiliated with the CDP, CSA, or S&P Global. The selection process for the SEAL Organizational Impact Award drew entirely upon publicly available information from each of the CDP and CSA.
High-Resolution Graphic: 2020 SEAL Environmental Initiative Award
High-Resolution Graphic: 2020 SEAL Organizational Impact Award
READ OUR WINNERS’ OWN ANNOUNCEMENTS
BC Partners (Private Equity Investor in GFL Environmental) – Sustainability Award Announcement
Dow, Kashi, and Berry Global – Sustainability Award Press Release
Dow, Kashi, and Berry Global – Sustainable Brands Coverage
Ferrovial – “Most Sustainable Companies” Announcement
Footprint – “Most Sustainable Companies” Announcement
Gaia Herbs – Industry Coverage of Sustainability Award
GFL Environmental – Sustainability Award Press Release
Green Standards – Environmental Initiative Award Announcement
Solo New York – Business Sustainability Award Press Release