SSE

InfluenceMap Score
B+
Performance Band
83%
Organisation Score
82%
Relationship Score
Sector:
Utilities
Head​quarters:
Perth, United Kingdom
Official Web Site:
Wikipedia:

Climate Lobbying Overview: SSE appears to be actively and positively engaging on climate change policy, including in its top-line statements, advocacy on specific climate policy and debate around the energy transition. The company is supportive of UK and EU net-zero targets, and seems to be supportive of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: SSE demonstrates positive top-line messaging on climate policy. The company is supportive of the UN Paris Agreement, stating in its 2022 Sustainability Report that it had met with the UK Prime Minister and worked to “maintain political resolve on the Glasgow Pact.” In a March 2022 press release, SSE’s CEO, Alistair Phillips-Davies, defended the UK’s 2050 net-zero target, rejecting the idea that pursuing net-zero is too expensive. A May 2022 Corporate Leaders Group joint letter to EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, signed by SSE, also stated strong support for the EU Climate Law, the policy setting the target of net-zero emissions by 2050 through the European Green Deal, as well as advocating for “an ambitious and effective Fit for 55 Package.”

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: SSE has consistently engaged positively on climate-related regulations. The company appeared to support the establishment of a UK Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), and called for it to be linked to the EU ETS in its 2021 Sustainability Report. SSE also supported greater ambition in the reform of the EU ETS in a February 2021 EU public consultation response. In its 2022 Sustainability Report SSE supported a “progressive tightening of the allowances” in both the EU ETS and the UK ETS to align the systems with net-zero targets. In the same report, the company supported an increase in the UK renewables target to 50GW offshore wind by 2030 as well as faster permitting processes to reach this target. In its 2021 CDP Climate Change Disclosure, SSE stated support for energy efficiency legislation across the EU and Ireland, including the EU Energy Efficiency Directive, and the Irish Energy Efficiency Obligation Scheme (EEOS). The company supported the EU’s 2030 55% emission reduction target in a joint statement in October 2021. In the company’s 2021 Annual Report, it stated support for the UK’s target to end sales of new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030. SSE also stated support for the UK’s 2035 78% GHG emission reduction target in its 2021 Sustainability Report.

Positioning on Energy Transition: SSE appears to engage positively on transitioning the energy mix. In an April 2022 blog, the CEO advocated for accelerated investment in renewable energies, storage technologies and hydropower to reduce UK's dependency on fossil fuels. The company signed a joint letter in July 2021 expressing support for an expansion of renewable energy in the energy mix, and appeared to advocate for a ban on new coal investments. In a Q4 2021 earnings call in May 2022, the company’s CEO Alistair Phillips-Davies welcomed the UK Government’s proposal to decarbonize the electricity sector by 2035. The company’s 2021 Sustainability Report suggested support for the decarbonization of the heating sector, advocating for a switch from fossil gas to electricity and hydrogen. However, SSE’s 2022 Sustainability Report appeared to support measures to “progress to 100% hydrogen-fuelled power generation”, referencing “low-carbon hydrogen” without adopting a clear position on the need to decarbonize hydrogen.

Industry Association Governance: In its 2021 Trade Associations Climate Review, SSE disclosed a review of its industry association memberships providing some transparency around its indirect influence, but has not fully met investor expectations. A detailed assessment of the company's industry association review can be found on our CA100+ platform here. The review includes a list of some of SSE’s industry association memberships, and includes details of alignment, and how it is attempting to influence the climate change policy positions of the industry associations. However, the company does not detail the type of membership held or refer to positions on specific policies. The company is a member of WindEurope, which is positively engaged with most climate policy.

A detailed assessment of the company's corporate review on climate policy engagement can be found on InfluenceMap's CA100+ Investor Hub here.

InfluenceMap collects and assesses evidence of corporate climate policy engagement on a weekly basis, depending on the availability of information from each specific data source (for more information see our methodology). While this analysis flows through to the company’s scores each week, the summary above is updated periodically. This summary was last updated in Q3 2022.

QUERIES
DATA SOURCES
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Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
WEAK
 
85%
 
85%
 
91%
 
91%
 
71%
 
71%

How to Read our Relationship Score Map

In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.