NSF International (www.nsf.org), a public health and safety organization, and Trucost Plc (www.trucost.com), a provider of environmental data and analysis, published a report, titled Carbon Emissions – Measuring the Risks. The free report examines the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of S&P 500 companies in several different sectors, including chemicals.

Specifically, the report looks at the GHGs emitted by S&P 500 companies in several sectors that NSF works with, including chemicals, food and beverage, healthcare, industrial goods and services, personal and household goods, automobiles and parts and retail.

Industry by industry, the report presents GHG impacts and identifies critical strategies to prepare for upcoming legislation. For example, the report notes that the average chemical company needs to prepare for the fact that over half of their carbon emissions are embedded in their supply chain, representing a significant financial risk.

The report also highlights such factors as:

  • Are companies measuring and reporting GHG emissions?

  • Which sectors emit the most direct operational GHGs?

  • Which sectors are most exposed to carbon costs under regulations to control GHG emissions?

  • Beyond carbon, what are the other significant environmental impacts of each sector?

The report is based on findings from Trucost’s study, Carbon Risks and Opportunities in the S&P 500, which assessed GHG emissions, carbon intensity and exposure to carbon costs of S&P companies internationally using publicly disclosed information. Using Trucost’s methodology to provide an overview of each industry’s impact on the environment, the key components of the NSF/Trucost report include carbon benchmarking, financial risk, environmental impacts, and strategic implications.

Trucost’s key findings among the chemical sector include:


  • The average major U.S. chemical company emits 6.6 million metric tons of GHGs annually.

  • Over 50 percent of emissions originate from supply chains, representing a serious financial exposure as costs are passed on to manufacturers.

  • The cost of carbon may reach as high as 25 percent of earnings for some firms, as measured by earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA).

  • Companies that compete with more carbon-efficient peers could lose market share.

To view Carbon Emissions – Measuring the Risks, visit
www.nsf.org/info/sandpcarbonemissionsreport.