Dude, where is the E?

Dude, where is the E?

Posted March 31, 2024 - 2 min read

General Motors, Goldman Sachs and Nestlé have abruptly stopped talking about Environmental issues

Given the recent SEC approval on March 06, 2024 of its long-awaited climate-related disclosure rules for U.S. public companies, we thought we should take a deeper look at exactly how American companies have been talking about the environment.

Cometrics.io's supplementary research to our project with the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism discovered that several leading companies have effectively stopped talking about leading environmental themes such as greenhouse gas, NetZero, and climate change.

From January 01, 2021 to December 31, 2023, Cometrics.io tracked all stated views from Executives, Boards and Corporates on broad themes ranging from sustainability to geopolitics from the largest companies in America. Initial results revealed that during the reporting period, communications about broad environmental themes have dropped by 32.2% and certain companies have largely stopped communicating about the environment.

Environmental Communication Analysis

Company and Percentage Drop in Environmental Communication from 2021 to 2023.

Company Percentage Drop
General Motors -95.44%
Goldman Sachs -72.94%
Nestle -72.49%
Unilever -68.04%
Mastercard -63.92%
TC Energy -62.27%
WPP -62.07%
MassMutual -56.25%
Morgan Stanley -48.38%
SAS -44.08%

During the period of January 01, 2021 to December 31, 2023, Cometrics analyzed the public facing communications from America’s largest 231 companies and compared them to a pre-established set of 90 themes relating to the Environment, Society and Governance. The communications content analyzed included public records from securities filings, websites, ESG documentation, social media chatter, communications by Executives, podcasts, paid advertising and news releases. Additional details about our methodology and research approach are available by email.

So, what happened to the Environment, in ESG?

We aggregated, filtered, normalized and thematically tagged all corporate communications from America's largest companies and have seen a seismic shift in the narrative away from Environmental communications to a narrative that is almost completely dominated by discussions of AI, Ethical AI and Generative AI.

These trends were identified by Cometrics.io and its proprietary platform that extracts, harmonizes and deciphers what companies are saying, thematically, revealing a unique view of the corporate communications landscape. If you wish to download an extract from our full research of strategic communications trends by sector, please email [email protected] or to try the Cometrics platform for free, please click here.