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Understanding the use of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to address climate change by oil and gas companies in developing nations

Loadwick, Annisa (2016) Understanding the use of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to address climate change by oil and gas companies in developing nations. Masters by Coursework thesis, Murdoch University.

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Abstract

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a tool which oil and gas (O&G) companies can use to voluntarily go beyond compliance with laws and regulations to address sustainability issues. This research examines the reported use of CSR by O&G companies operating in developing nations to address climate change mitigation and adaptation. Developing nations may lack regulation, capability or willingness to require O&G companies to take steps to mitigate or adapt to climate change due to weak institutional structures, lack of enforcement of regulations, and the competing interests of economic development and tackling climate change. The first aim of the research was to establish whether there is recognition of the issue of climate change in the CSR Reports of O&G companies operating in developing nations. If so, what are the strategic responses by these companies to climate change? The second aim was to explore if O&G companies who operate in developing nations are using CSR programmes to conduct climate change mitigations and adaptation activities. If so, what are these mitigations or adaptations that are being deployed voluntarily as CSR? The method included a literature review and then an analysis of the CSR Reports of 20 O&G companies with operations in developing nations. Questions were established to identify what strategies, if any, companies were deploying to mitigate and adapt to climate change. These questions were used to collect data from the CSR Reports of 20 O&G companies with operations in developing nations. The research found that O&G companies operating in developing nations are deploying strategies to mitigate and adapt to climate change. Most companies recognised climate change as an issue in their CSR Reports and had deployed strategic responses to climate change as CSR. These responses included memberships of voluntary organisations, GHG emissions reporting and reduction, investment in renewable energy and other activities such as tree planting and deployment of carbon capture and storage technology. The O&G industry does recognise climate change as an issue and is using CSR as a tool to respond voluntarily and deploy mitigation and adaptation strategies. However, this research indicates that the CSR programmes of O&G companies are not necessarily addressing climate change ‘on the ground’ in developing nations.

Publication Type: Thesis (Masters by Coursework)
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Veterinary and Life Sciences
Supervisor: Morrison-Saunders, Angus
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/35556
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