greenwashing and corporate responsibility
The cover of this week’s Economist consisted of three large letters – ESG. Environmental, social, and corporate governance, which is what they stand for, “won’t save the planet,” the caption to the cover of this edition of the UK magazine said.
“Environmental” comprises, among other things, climate change, greenhouse-gas emissions, water and air pollution, environmental diversity, and efficient waste management. “Social” includes things like working conditions, gender integration and diversity in staffing policies and practices, labour rights, equal opportunities, employee satisfaction, and the respect for privacy. “Governance” in this context refers to how representative and effective a company’s board is, the composition and efficacy of internal and external auditing and review boards, the criteria used to calculate the salaries and benefits of senior staff, and how companies behave in terms of lobbying and electoral campaign donations.
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