Companies in the United States and Canada are three times more likely to risk violating United Nations environmental standards compared to other regions worldwide, according to new research from ESG Book.
The analysis coincides with the release of ESG Book’s Risk Score, a transparent, data-driven assessment of corporate exposure to critical ESG topics based on the UN Global Compact, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative.
In its study of over 10,000 corporations, ESG Book found that North American companies are the most susceptible globally to infringements of the UN Global Compact’s environmental principles, with 60 percent of companies identified as being at a heightened risk of contravening the international agreement coming from the U.S.
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According to ESG Book’s data relating to the UN Global Compact’s principles — the environment, human rights, labor, and anti-corruption — Asia is identified as the most vulnerable of the major markets, with 15 percent of Asian companies at risk of infringing the universal principles. This is driven by companies in Korea (28 percent); Japan (19 percent); and China (16 percent), and the risk of anti-corruption breaches in particular.
In Europe, companies are less likely to breach the majority of UN Global Compact principles compared with North American and Asian counterparts. An exception to this is the low exposure of North American companies to anti-corruption risk (0.5 percent), where U.S. firms perform seven times better than the rest of the world (3.5 percent), and three times better than European corporates (1.5 percent).
Powered by more than 200 metrics from ESG Book’s proprietary data modules, the Risk Score provides comprehensive analytics on the sustainability risk exposure of over 10,000 companies worldwide.