THE HEART OF THE MATTER: ESG
“Specifically, we need leadership that is oriented towards the future, not the past.”
Will governments and business leaders seize the opportunity and widespread demand to place ESG matters at the centre of COVID-19 recovery planning? Doug Morrison investigates.
Amid the global devastation caused by COVID-19, environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues have remained resolutely high up the business agenda. If anything, there is a growing lobby to ensure policymakers promote a green and sustainable economic response to the pandemic.
By far the biggest collective business shot across the bows of governments came in May in a joint statement signed by CEOs from 155 multinationals with a combined market capitalisation of US$ 2.4 trillion and representing over five million employees.
Backed by the United Nations (UN), these business leaders urged governments around the world to align their COVID-19 economic recovery efforts with the latest climate science. It was also a reaffirming of their own science-based commitments by blue-chip corporates as diverse as Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Nestlé and Zurich Insurance Group.
“I would say the climate and health emergencies have to be looked at as part and parcel of the standard operating procedure every business must now address”
DR. RAVI FERNANDO
COVID has brought to the forefront the social dimension of sustainability, and that our progress and our ultimate success relies on ensuring that solutions are inclusive and equitable.
– Mike Gerbis, CEO, The Delphi Group