According to recent findings from a poll performed by INSEAD and Boston Consulting Group, board members of firms throughout the world remain skeptical about their companies' capacity to meet environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals.
Over 5,200 companies committed to achieving net-zero emissions last year in the run-up to the UN Climate Change Conference.
The BSG and INSEAD firms noted in a statement on Friday that while climate change was identified as one of the top three ESG issues in terms of its financial impact, many companies are yet to offer a plan for addressing the issue.
“Directors have significant skepticism about whether companies they oversee can deliver on ambitious ESG targets,” noted David Young, a BCG managing director and senior partner.
Among companies that have set a net-zero commitment, only 55% of directors reported that their company has prepared and published a plan for hitting that target. And an even smaller share—43%—said their company has published financial statements accounting for the implications of climate change.
“More and more companies are making net-zero commitments,” said Sonia Tatar, executive director of the INSEAD Corporate Governance Centre.
“And directors have a critical part to play in ensuring those pledges come with concrete plans and execution as they steward businesses for a sustainable economic performance that drives greater good for society and the environment.”