MERALCO FORTIFIES SUSTAINABILITY LEADERSHIP WITH GLOBAL ACHIEVEMENTS

In recent years, sustainability has become a key imperative for businesses worldwide, with the private sector shifting towards striking a healthy balance between generating income and caring for people and the environment.

In 2019, the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) embarked on its own journey, placing sustainability atop its corporate agenda and at the core of its strategy and operations. Through the leadership of Meralco President and CEO, Atty. Ray C. Espinosa, the Company established its sustainability agenda called Powering the Good Life, which is deeply rooted in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and is marked by a distinctive focus on four pillars — Power, Planet, People, and Prosperity.

In support of this agenda, Meralco has launched various groundbreaking initiatives, including drawing 1,500 megawatts (MW) of the Distribution Utility’s power requirements through 2025 from clean energy sources; building 1,500 MW of renewable energy capacity in the next five years through its power generation arm, Meralco PowerGen (MGen); electrifying 25% of its vehicle fleet by 2030; planting and nurturing five (5) million trees by 2025 with the help of local communities to help protect and preserve Philippine forests and watersheds; and achieving 40% women representation in its workforce by the end of this decade.

Meralco’s sustainability agenda also includes planting and nurturing five (5) million trees by 2025 with the help of local communities to help protect and preserve Philippine forests and watersheds.

In only three years, Meralco’s array of initiatives has not gone unnoticed as it earned wide recognition from various local and international award-giving bodies, as well as high marks from global ESG rating bodies, signifying that Meralco is indeed on the right track.

All-time best ESG rating from MSCI and inclusion in World Benchmarking Alliance’s SDG2000

In March 2022, Meralco’s environmental, social, and governance (ESG) rating was upgraded by MSCI — a multinational investment research firm which assesses over 8,500 companies around the world on ESG parameters — to an all-time best BBB. This follows the Company’s BB rating from 2019 to 2021. MSCI uses a scale with AAA as the highest rating and CCC as the lowest. In granting the upgrade, the rating firm cited Meralco’s strong performance in renewable energy opportunities and human capital development.

Earlier this year, Meralco was likewise included in the World Benchmarking Alliance’s (WBA) SDG2000, a collection of the most influential companies globally that are well-positioned to drive the world towards the fulfillment of the SDGs. As a result, Meralco will be included in two of the WBA’s seven benchmarks, particularly on social and urban transformation.

Constituent of FTSE4Good indices

In December 2021, Meralco was recognized as one of the most socially and environmentally responsible companies worldwide by UK-based global sustainability index provider FTSE Russell, making it the second Philippine power company to become a constituent of the FTSE4Good Index Series. In particular, Meralco became a constituent of two FTSE4Good indices — the Emerging Index and the ASEAN 5 Index.

The FTSE4Good Index Series is a set of global sustainability indices against which companies are measured to determine quality of performance in key ESG areas such as climate change, labor standards, and anti-corruption.

To be a FTSE4Good constituent, a company in an emerging market must achieve an overall ESG rating of 2.9 or higher. With Meralco’s ESG rating of 3.2, it not only managed to qualify for inclusion but also topped the Philippines’ and the global energy sector’s averages.

Multi-awarded Sustainability Report

Meralco has also been consistently recognized for its excellence in sustainability communication. Its 2020 Sustainability Report (SR), entitled Live Life, received a total of six (6) citations from various award-giving bodies, both here in the Philippines and abroad.

Live Life won a Silver Stevie at the 2021 International Business Awards in the Best Annual Report category. It also won a Gold Stevie at the 2022 Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards in the Innovation in Annual Reports category.

Furthermore, the SR was conferred a Gold Rank in the International Companies category at the 2021 Asia Sustainability Report Rating (ASRRAT) Forum.

Rounding out its international recognitions, Live Life earned an Award of Excellence at the 2022 Gold Quill Awards in the Publications category.

Among its local accolades, Live Life won was a Silver Anvil at the 57th Anvil Awards in the Public Relations Tool category. It also received a Merit Award at the 19th Philippine Quill Awards alongside Meralco’s Annual Report (Power On) and One Meralco Foundation’s (OMF) Annual Report (Give Hope).

Live Life underscores the Company’s steadfast commitment to embedding sustainability into its strategy and operations by providing accessible, affordable, reliable, and clean power to its customers while protecting and preserving the planet and bringing prosperity to its stakeholders. Also highlighted in the SR are Meralco’s long-term sustainability aspirations and strategies through 2030 and beyond.

Meralco’s latest Sustainability Report entitled Kalinga — together with its 2021 Annual Report (Bayanihan) and One Meralco Foundation’s Annual Report (Malasakit) — clinched a Silver Stevie at the 2022 International Business Awards in August this year.

Meanwhile, Meralco’s latest Sustainability Report entitled Kalinga — together with its 2021 Annual Report (Bayanihan) and One Meralco Foundation’s Annual Report (Malasakit) — clinched another Silver Stevie at the 2022 International Business Awards in August this year.

“Such recognition from our stakeholders and award-giving bodies gives us great pride as it reflects our earnest commitment to sustainability,” said Meralco Chief Sustainability Officer Raymond B. Ravelo.

“Inspired by these achievements, and more so by the positive transformation and impact our efforts have had on all we serve, we will continue placing sustainability at the core of all we do as a company as we help bring forth a better normal and a brighter future for all,” he added.

For his part, Meralco President and Chief Executive Officer Atty. Ray C. Espinosa said, “We, in Meralco, will continue to advance our drive towards sustainability, not only by heightening our efforts to keep the lights on for our customers and communities but also by intensifying our initiatives to protect and preserve the planet.”

“As we forge ahead, we are committed to accelerating our sustainability transformation while meeting the needs of our recovering nation and providing and powering more life to sustain the Filipino,” he added.

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