The Wall Street Journal has named Eastman (NYSE: EMN) one of the 100 most sustainably managed companies in the world. This list by the publication is based on analysis by its experts on how well companies perform across a range of sustainability analytics, including environment, innovation and the workplace.
The list of the 100 most sustainably managed companies in the world was published Oct. 12. The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reviewed more than 5,500 publicly traded companies around the world to arrive at the top 100 that are most sustainably managed. Out of those 5,500, Eastman is ranked No. 90. Eastman is one of only three U.S.-based companies in the chemicals sector on the list.
WSJ experts developed a scoring model that combined transparency by companies themselves in the form of publicly disclosed information in combination with analysis of more than 8,000 media sources. The WSJ wrote that its ranking methodology includes a wide range of sustainability criteria, including a company's governance practices and leadership, that can be used to assess a company's ability to create long-term value for shareholders.
The newspaper's specialists in environment, social and governance (ESG) assessed company performance in four categories: employee and workplace issues, external social and product issues, innovation and business model, and the environment. Eastman's highest score was in environment, where it ranked No. 30, and it ranked no lower than No. 59 in all other categories. The ESG framework is commonly used in the investment world to assess a company's sustainability and social impact.
"Eastman is celebrating our centennial anniversary this year, and to build on that century of success, we're leveraging our ability to change and adapt to deliver sustainable solutions for a world that is moving faster and is facing difficult, long-term challenges," said Mark Costa, board chair and CEO. "As a material innovation company, it is our responsibility to step up and use our unique skills and expertise to help address challenges that include climate change and the global waste crisis. We know we don't exist to simply make materials. We exist to make materials that improve people's lives in a meaningful, measurable way and to create an economy that better serves everyone."
Eastman is a member of the United Nations Global Compact and is guided by its 10 principles for sustainable business, and Eastman aligns with Global Reporting Initiative standards and the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals. Eastman's innovation-driven growth strategy has for several years been predicated on delivering material solutions for some of the world's most pressing problems, such as feeding a growing population and efficient use of natural resources. The need to accelerate a circular economy that addresses the global waste crisis is also a pressing issue, and Eastman has launched two molecular recycling technologies that are operating at commercial scale. Those technologies are capable of recycling almost any kind of waste plastic an infinite number of times.
Each year, Eastman publishes its goals and progress across a range of sustainability criteria, including sustainability of its portfolio, environmental performance and social impact, in an annual sustainability report.
"We are publishing our 2020 sustainability report in November, and we look forward to that with great anticipation," said Steve Crawford, chief technology and sustainability officer. "We'll announce new Eastman sustainability goals as part of the report, and those goals – on areas that include climate and materials circularity – are the most aggressive and far-reaching in the company's 100-year history."
The full report on the 100 most sustainably managed companies in the world is available in The Wall Street Journal.