Last Month in Taipei saw the launch of this year’s edition of the CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project) Report for Asia Ex-Japan conducted by ASrIA (Association for Sustainable & Responsible Investment in Asia).
The report has seen increasing participation over the years with this year’s edition involving 220 companies throughout Asia (Taiwan, Korea and Singapore in particular had high response rates). Not only has the report increased in breadth but also in the depth of responses it does receive.
This year’s responses were noted to have significantly moved past generic responses to more specific disclosures with many more companies willing to report on initial climate change work.
Traditional leaders in ESG within Asia have been observed to be experimenting intensively with targets and metrics which could very well define Carbon Leadership in the region.
Also highlighted is proof that the the Global Power Brands are working with some success in encouraging their extensive supply chain to begin reporting on carbon emissions.
Extreme Weather Events: A Material Risk to Facilities & Supply Chains
One of the key themes of the report was the rise in recognition of extreme weather events as requiring both mitigation and adaptation.
Specific weather events cited include:
- Annual Haze in Indonesia
- Generated by Forest Clearing Fires
- Also affects neighbours like Singapore and Malaysia.
- Annual Spring Sand Storms in China
- Increasing Desertification in China
- Also affects neighbours like Korea, Taiwan and Japan.
Hynix, a Korean semiconductor supplier, specifically disclosed that its operational processes were permeated by yellow sand from these Sand Storms, causing damage to products and plant.
Basic recognition is widespread with 70% of respondents citing the potential of Weather Events to:
- Disrupt Production
- Interrupt Services
- Impact Assets
However only a handful of companies have delved further to highlight information such as the consequent impact of weather events on production cost.
A major catalyst for enhanced risk management in this area are the Climate Change Assessment Processes conducted by ESG consultants and their uncovering of the greater impacts of weather risk. Examples of enhanced risk management include being insured for ‘Climate Change driven Financial Risk Management’ as disclosed by LG Electronics.
There are some companies however that indicate that they do not perceive weather events as potential business risks at all, one of these companies is Tata Steel.
Lastly, some companies actually report potential benefits from these weather events. Members of the Telecoms industry for example cite the potential for these events to allow them to demonstrate the potential of mobile communications and the potential for their technologies to be employed in the development of environmental monitoring solutions.