Trucost teams up with Singapore exchange on environmental info

Launch of SGX Environmental Benchmark Insights

Environmental data provider Trucost has teamed up with the Singapore stock exchange (SGX) to help listed firms assess their environmental impact.
They have launched a new programme called SGX Environmental Benchmark Insights, or SEBI.
They point out that just 36% of companies in the MSCI Asia index report on their environmental impact. This compares to 72% in Europe and 58% of the US S&P 500 companies.
“Specifically the intent is to help SGX companies further understand natural resource dependency and optimise their operations in line with resource availability,” the pair said in a joint statement.
There will be two SEBI modules: a corporate briefing part and a benchmark part, they said.

The first identifies environmental impacts most significant to company operations and supply chains. It also assesses profit at risk from future environmental costs, benchmarks environmental performance and disclosure.The second part will provide detailed peer assessments. The two organisations will run an explanatory road show for companies later this year.

Mita Natarajan, SGX’s Head of Corporate Services, said companies that cut their natural resource risks could get a competitive advantage from lower costs and better access to capital.

Trucost’s head of environmental finance Neil McIndoe added that water is a key environmental issue for Asian companies. The London-based firm calculates that over 25% of global firms’ profits would be wiped out if water were priced correctly.

SGX said at the ESG Asia event earlier this year that it planned a survey of the sustainability reporting practices of its 100 largest companies with the aim of promoting better implementation.

And it comes as the Monetary Authority of Singapore has accepted all the recommendations made by an expert panel about revising its Corporate Governance Code, with the revised code coming into effect from November 1.