Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


European Oil Companies: 'Climate Change is CSR Job No. 1'

A recently published survey of oil companies operating in Europe finds their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) policies improving and relatively advanced, with climate change mitigation now being seen by the companies as their foremost strategic issue.

The survey is based on replies received from nine oil companies operating in Europe: BP, Shell, Total, Repsol, Statoil, Hydro, Amerada Hess, Orlen and Talisman.

“The most interesting finding is that the European oil companies now clearly have come to view climate change mitigation as the most important social and environmental issue confronting the industry,” says Elin Lerum Boasson, lead author of the survey and a Research Fellow with the Fridtjof Nansen Institute (FNI).

The companies’ replies also indicate that countering bribery has a fairly high strategic importance, while issues such as the promotion of gender equality and minimizing the risk of chemicals seem to be of a comparatively lower importance.

The survey has been carried out by FNI researchers in cooperation with the Stockholm Environmental Institute and is part of the larger EU-financed research project Rhetoric and Realities: Analysing Corporate Social Responsibility in Europe (RARE). In addition to the oil sector, the project has investigated CSR activities in the banking and fish processing sectors, as well as in small and medium-sized companies (SMEs).

The survey reveals the oil companies’ CSR policies to be relatively advanced: On average, the companies adhere to as many as 17 CSR instruments, with the Global Compact, the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, the Responsible Care Initiative, ISO 14001, and the Global Reporting Initiative being most favoured. However, when asked which CSR instruments are contributing most to their performance, the companies generally view their ‘company-specific’ instruments to be more efficient than the more ‘standard’ ones.

While the European Commission’s definition of CSR sees it as efforts going beyond formal legal compliance, the oil sector (as well as the other sectors surveyed) seems to reject this official definition, viewing their voluntary activities on social and environmental issues above all as a means to ensure compliance with mandatory legislation.

“The EU has urged industry to take on ambitious measures voluntary through developing CSR policies. The survey indicates that this strategy has failed,” comments Boasson.

The survey nevertheless concludes that the increasing rhetorical attention to concepts such as CSR seems to have had at least some effect on oil actual behaviour in the European oil sector – at least that is how the companies perceive it themselves.

Claes Lykke Ragner | alfa
Further information:

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Invasive Insects Cost the World Billions Per Year
04.10.2016 | University of Adelaide

nachricht Malaysia's unique freshwater mussels in danger
27.09.2016 | The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Oasis of life in the ice-covered central Arctic

24.10.2016 | Earth Sciences

‘Farming’ bacteria to boost growth in the oceans

24.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

24.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy

More VideoLinks >>>