Guidelines released today can help companies manage and report their direct and indirect influences on climate policy, according to the UN Global Compact.
The UN Global Compact developed the Guide to Responsible Corporate Engagement in Climate Policy in cooperation with other international organizations including the World Resources Institute.
The guide helps companies to connect the dots between sustainability commitments, such as emissions reductions across their value chains and efficiency improvements, with their corporate policy positions. It sets baseline expectations for companies to provide input for governments to create effective climate policies.
In a survey of UN Global Compact companies released in September, only 30 percent have aligned their traditional government affairs activities with their corporate responsibility commitments, such as taking action on climate change.
The report comes as negotiators meet at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP19) in Warsaw, Poland, with the aim of committing to a timeline to achieve a new climate agreement in 2015, to take effect in 2020.
The guide establishes what the UN Global Compact calls “the core elements of responsible corporate engagement” and translates that into three actions for companies:
- Identify the company’s opportunity by creating an inventory of its influences on climate policy;
- Align its positions and influences to ensure consistency and accountability; and
- Report on climate change policy influences, intentions and outcomes using a three-tiered framework for transparency.