Shell Again Most Sustainable/Ethical Oil Company in 2006

For the third year running, Shell ranks the most sustainable/ethical company, followed by BP and Brazil's Petrobras, according to a study by the Madrid ethics rating firm Management & Excellence (M&E).

Shell substantially improved from 82% (2005) to 89%. It supports 12 codes of human rights and its board met a record 29 times in 2004, compared with 8 at BP. It offers grievance channels for employees in over 50 countries and is implementing 120 biodiversity projects worldwide. No oil company studied was as transparent as Shell, publishing 13 separate reports on topics ranging from environmental impact to animal testing. Caught in a scandal two years ago for misrepresenting its oil reserves, Shell now publishes a 40-page report on how its reserves calculations comply with SEC guidelines.

                               Ranking

                    1.  Shell            89.01%
                    2.  BP               83.52%
                        Petrobras        83.52%
                    4.  Statoil          83.15%
                    5.  Total            76.19%
                    6.  Norsk Hydro      73.26%
                        Repsol           73.26%
                    8.  Chevron          72.53%
                    9.  ExxonMobil       68.13%
                    10. Conoco           66.30%
                    11. Pemex            62.64%
                    12. ENI              62.27%
                    13. Lukoil           58.61%
                    14. Gazprom          35.90%
                    15. Petronas         20.15%

Brazil's Petrobras, moves up this year from 7th (2005) to 2nd place. While Exxon scored 80% in 2005, it only achieved 68.1% this year, owing to gaps in reporting and thus dropping it from 2nd to 9th place in 2006. Exxon gives little information on employee performance measurement systems, supplier management, and is not listed in the FTSE4Good or Dow Jones Sustainability indices.

Other companies are improving their transparency. Russia's Lukoil manages to raise its total score by 23 percentage points from 35% to 58.61%, or a jump of 67%. In September 2005 Lukoil released its first sustainability report, which more than doubled its transparency score from 29% (2005) to 62% (2006).

Management & Excellence (M&E) was one of the first companies to research and rate companies in sustainability and ethical areas, specializing in the oil business and Latin America. The current study "World's Most Sustainable and Ethical Oil Companies" analyzes companies according to their actual compliance with over 280 internationally recognized standards in sustainability, corporate governance, social responsibility (CSR) and ethics customized to the oil industry.

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