CDP 2016 – Four changes to the questionnaire you need to know about

Published 14th March 2016 by Lucy Haines

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Every year CDP updates the questionnaires in an effort to increase the quality and transparency of company disclosures, as well as to keep up with changing best practice in sustainability reporting.

This year CDP has introduced a number of key changes to the Climate Change and Supply Chain questionnaires that will impact both how you disclose and overall scores.

Companies that understand these changes now will have a significant advantage when forming their responses. If you haven’t been keeping track of the latest CDP updates don’t worry. We have summarized the most important four changes for 2016 below:

  1. Scoring – This year the disclosure and performance score (e.g. 97 disclosure points, B performance score) has been scrapped. For 2016, CDP has significantly changed its approach to scoring, separating companies into four different bands that indicate progress towards environmental stewardship. These are:

    Disclosure > Awareness > Management > Leadership 

    Within each band companies will be awarded a grade. To reach the next band a company will have to answer a certain number of questions and achieve a score over the threshold. This has been introduced in an effort to shift the scoring focus from disclosures to actions on managing carbon and climate change impacts and related performance.

  2. Scope 2  CDP is aligning with the GHG Protocol’s ‘Dual Reporting’ of Scope 2 emissions. Companies are now required to respond on both their Market and Location based Scope 2 emissions. The market method allows companies to report emissions according to supplier-specific emission factors that include the impact of purchasing low carbon or renewable electricity. 

    You can find out more about dual reporting and how Carbon Clear can help HERE.

  3. Renewable energy – Companies can now report renewable energy consumption, production and targets in the CDP questionnaire. This change is driven by the consensus from COP21 that a rapid transition towards increasing levels of renewable energy generation is needed. CDP is pushing companies to commit to procuring 100% of electricity from renewable sources. Disclosing information about your company’s renewable energy policy will impact on points awarded in the awareness, management and leadership categories and is therefore recommended.
  4. Science Based Targets – CDP is driving forward the importance of setting carbon targets based in science by including a question this year’s Climate Change and Supply Chain questionnaire. CDP is calling for companies to be more ambitious and set targets in line with sector and country level targets to meet the challenges that climate change presents. They are also asking companies to adopt a science based emissions reduction target and leadership points are available if the target has been verified by the Science-Based Target Initiative’s official target quality check.

Finally, CDP have introduced an administration fee for disclosure in 2016. While this is may be frustrating, it’s important to remember the benefits that responding to CDP brings to your business. CDP disclosure contributes towards your brand and reputation, helping benchmark you against your peers. It also helps companies to identify future climate change related risks and the chance to capitalise on potential opportunities. Ultimately, CDP disclosure allows investors access to important elements of your environmental, social and governance policies, informing their investment strategies.

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To find out more about CDP reporting please click here


 

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