The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) works with thousands of companies worldwide to achieve a more sustainable environment. FirstCarbon Solutions has teamed up with CDP to produce carbon footprint scores for many of these companies. Participating companies were asked to complete a questionnaire of CDP requirements. The answers were then used to compile disclosure and performance scores. These scores help to encourage companies to increase emissions measurement and information disclosure, ultimately improving management of environmental risk. This article discusses the score results for the Nordic region, which includes Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden.

FirstCarbon Solutions 2012 Nordic Region Commentary and Assessment

It’s been another great year for the CDP Nordic Region with a large number of respondents, underlying the increasing awareness of carbon emissions and their impact on the environment.

The majority of responding companies recognize the importance of corporate carbon management and the business case for evaluating, reporting and managing issues related to climate change.  And of the 145 Nordic companies that submitted a response to the CDP Investor questionnaire in 2012, more than 90% received a disclosure score of 50 or higher which means they provided enough information to also be scored for performance.

Governance and Strategy

92% of Nordic companies have executive oversight of their climate action plans and while 57% of respondents indicated the use of incentives for management (for achieving goals set forth), only 43% provided explanations about the types of incentive programs in use.  Likewise, 68% of respondents indicate actively working on climate mitigation plans and integrating climate change into their strategy planning, and only 29% provide sufficient details surrounding these initiatives to gain maximum points from CDP in this area.

Risk and Opportunities

Risks and opportunities posed a greater challenge for respondents than many other categories of questions. As there are significant CDP points available for these questions, respondents needed to be more diligent in providing, a full assessment of their risks or opportunities by identifying the specific plans, projects, or actions related to the risk or opportunity identified.

Emissions management and reporting

Nordic respondents did an excellent job completing the questions regarding Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions, (96% & 95%, respectively).  And results were nearly as good for Scope 3 emissions (with 88% describing at least one source of Scope 3 emissions and 72% providing complete information on at least one type of Scope 3 emission).  This positively affected the CDP disclosure scoring. Disclosure scoring was generally weaker for the reporting of emissions by geography, businesses, or other breakout categories.

Many companies did not disclose any carbon emission reduction targets (18% reported only absolute targets, 39% reported only intensity targets and 12% reported both).  This was an area of weakness for Nordic respondents in 2012 and a key area for improvement in 2013.

Stakeholder Engagement and Verification

A number of issues are included in this category, not the least of which is whether companies publish their climate change policies and performance.  Nordic respondents scored well, with over 74% publishing their policies or performance in mainstream filings or other external communications.  Respondents scored less favorably on external verification of emissions data.  Verification is an important part of Stakeholder Engagement as it provides the added assurance that reported emissions are accurate.  As such, there are significant points available for emission verification.  Verification proves challenging for most respondents yet 29% of Nordic companies provided verified data for Scope 1 and/or Scope 2, matching all verification criteria and providing valuable insight for investment communities.


In 2012 Nordic companies are demonstrating the value of carbon sustainability as well as the strategic importance of addressing the effects of climate change in corporate planning.  With over 90% of the companies receiving a performance band, the Nordic region has proven to score well in 2012.

But completing all the CDP requirements, achieving the maximum score, and qualifying for the CDLI and CPLI should be the goal for any organization submitting to the Carbon Disclosure Project.  And it is clear that with some additional attention in the areas of transparency, participation in mitigation planning and emission verification, respondents will have a positive impact on their disclosure and performance results.   To score well in performance, it is particularly important to actively measure, verify, manage and reduce carbon emissions.

As the scoring partner for CDP’s Nordic and DACH regions in 2012, FirstCarbon Solutions has a unique perspective on how to maximize CDP performance. In addition, FirstCarbon Solutions is available to assist companies in reducing their carbon footprint by improving their carbon monitoring and reduction programs, and can tailor-make solutions to allow companies to work at their individual pace, including:

  • Carbon Inventories and Verification
  • Data Management Planning and Implementation
  • Risks and Opportunities Analysis
  • Supply Chain and Life Cycle Assessments




Did you enjoy this post? The author of this article is Matthew Squires. Learn more about him here.

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