In an effort to assess the advancement of corporate sustainability in the southeast, I worked with Stephanie Armistead, president and CEO of GreenBusiness Works, in co-founding the Southeastern Corporate Sustainability Rankings.
Each year, we hire experts to evaluate companies in the southeast on their environmental and social, governance (ESG) progress. The rankings are based on the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) framework, which is widely recognized as the standard for corporate sustainability reporting. To qualify to participate, a company must be publicly traded on a major global exchange, have a minimum market capitalization of $100 Million USD as of June 30 of the reporting year, and must be headquartered in the Southeastern U.S. A company must also have produced a publicly available sustainability or corporate responsibility (CSR) report with a full year of ESG data for its calendar year before December 31.
The top ranking companies in each state are recognized for their achievements online, in the press and at our awards event each May.
Our goals are to:
- Help Southeastern companies know where they stand so they can maintain and improve their priorities and actions
- Serve as an information tool to help companies align their goals with their values and performance
- Help to create a legacy of corporate and social responsibility in the southeastern U.S.
- Raise awareness about the consequences of actions companies in the course of conducting business so they take steps toward reducing their carbon footprints
Companies that improve their social and environmental performance create less waste and pollution, improve supply chains, enjoy better employee relations and can increase their overall value among other positive outcomes, including the ability to stick around for a long time, i.e., sustainability.
The Southeastern Corporate Sustainability Rankings are the only such rankings for companies headquartered in the Southeastern U.S. We’ve seen a steady increase in ESG reporting, underscoring that even in the more traditional and conservative southeast, pursuing a healthy triple bottom line — people, planet, profits — is not a trend. It’s established best practices.
See the rankings for previous years:
Other Recent National and Global Rankings
- Newsweek Green Rankings 2014: Top 500 U.S. Companies
- Newsweek Green Rankings 2014: Top 500 Global Companies