Evaluating Green Ratings reveals areas for improvement

Green/sustainability is a hot topic and there are now bunches of company that will rate your enterprise for being green/sustainable.  Given this is all relatively new, how good are these companies?

Here is a report prepared that rates the raters.

Rate the Raters, Phase Three
Uncovering Best Practices

22 Feb 2011 – Report

Corporate sustainability ratings are going mainstream, but how they work in practice remains somewhat of a mystery. For phase three of Rate the Raterswe conducted in-depth evaluations of 21 ratings, in an attempt to shed light on this important area. The 21 ratings we focused on were a representative sample of the 100+ ratings that we inventoried in phase two.

Our phase three work revealed numerous examples of good practice, which are detailed in our report. We are starting to see efforts to reduce the survey fatigue that companies face. A greater number of raters are soliciting feedback and direction from external experts, many through formal advisory panels. And we observe a few raters opening up their black boxes to let us in on their methodologies. Yet we found many areas in need of improvement as well, and offer a number of recommendations to raters for the future.

The above is phase three.  Here the other phases.

See phase one and phase two for further background and context.

CNET news also covers this report.

Green rating agencies fall short, report says

by Candace Lombardi

  • When it comes to grading companies on their sustainability, some leading organizations fall short as far as transparency and methodology. That's according to a white paper released this week by SustainAbility.com, an organization that is both a think tank and a consulting firm for corporations looking to improve green standings and sustainability practices.

(Credit: SustainAbility.com)

SustainAbility.com issued a video Tuesday along with its report discussing how 21 of the leading eco-ratings organizations it investigated based on 13 criteria (see chart) appeared to be insufficiently evaluating the companies they target. Its partners include the United Nations Environment Programme and the Global Reporting Initiative , while its clients include Starbucks, Coca-Cola, and Shell.