The implications of ESG requirements for companies are manifold. Climate change has played a central role in recent years: Laws are accelerating technological change (e.g. automotive sector), consumers are increasingly opting for sustainable products and corporate environmental awareness is moving into the focus of the public – which includes investors, financiers, suppliers and employees.
At the same time, the number of laws, regulations and guidelines on transparency and sustainability is increasing, and companies must ensure compliance with these in a timely manner. Examples of this are, for example, the Supply Chain Act, which obliges companies to have a complex risk management system, or the EU taxonomy, which evaluates ecologically sustainable economic activities of companies via a classification system in order to promote sustainable investments. The relevance is also increasing in financing and on the capital markets: ESG ratings are booming and companies that have been identified as less sustainable are having increasing difficulties with financing or refinancing.
Against this background, it is essential to assess not only ESG risks but also potentials for companies - especially in the context of transformations or investments. A reflective ESG approach will be essential for the future competitiveness of companies in all sectors.