The Importance Of The Transportation Sector To The Sustainable Development Goals

Previously I have written about the importance of the healthcare, resource transformation, food and beverage, consumption, extractives & minerals processing, renewables and alternative energy, and infrastructure sectors to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The underlying data for that blog are based on a paper “The Relationship Between Investor Materiality and the Sustainable Development Goals: A Methodological Framework” that I wrote with Professors Gianni Betti and Costanza Consolandi of the University of Siena. A summary of our methodology is provided in my healthcare post. In brief, we mapped the 26 material environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues (organized in terms of the categories environment, social capital, human capital, business model & innovation, and leadership & governance) in all 77 industries organized into 11 sectors, developed by the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB), to the 169 targets of the SDGs.  Mapping these issues to the SDGs’ targets enabled us to assess how each industry is creating or destroying value for society while focusing on those ESG issues that create value for shareholders. Based on this mapping we created an index that ranges from 0 to 100.

In this post I will analyze the importance of the transportation sector. It’s overall score is 18.1—compared to 36.0 for food and beverage, 32.6 for healthcare, 30.4 for extractives & mineral processing, 28.4 for resource transformation, 23.8 for renewables and alternative energy, 21.4 for infrastructure, and 20.1 for consumption—putting it the lowest end of the sectors I have written about so far. There is variation with this sector of eight industries. At the top end is automobiles (24.6), air freight and logistics (24.6, auto parts (23.2), and marine transportation (21.2). At the bottom end are road transportation (15.0), rail transportation (13.8), airlines (12.6), and car rental and leasing (9.6).

By: Bob Eccles


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