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HOUSTON -- BP, the world's second-largest company, reclaimed the top spot this year in Fortune magazine's prestigious ranking of the most accountable companies in the world. The annual list ranks the world's 100 largest corporations by the quality of their commitment to social and environmental goals.
Produced by Fortune in partnership with London-based thinktank AccountAbility and for-profit consultancy CSR Network, the annual ranking is now in its fourth year. Four categories, including strategy, governance, stakeholder involvement and performance, were the determining factors when assessing each company.
According to Fortune, "BP has led its industry in the research and development of wind, solar and carbon-dioxide sequestration technologies. New CEO Tony Hayward's core focus is getting new oil and gas projects online, like fields in Azerbaijan, Angola, Indonesia and the Gulf of Mexico. That pleases shareholders and helps to lower prices for consumers through increased supply -- a goal BP considers a core part of its social responsibility. Despite two years of major accidents -- a pipeline spill in 2006 and a refinery explosion in 2005 -- BP earned points for replacing several executives at those businesses."
Commenting on the announcement, AbdulKarim Al Mazmi, regional vice president of BP Middle East, said in a statement: "BP is committed to social development and environmental sustainability. From developing safety standards for our people and communities to investing in innovative technology that reduces impact on the environment, the company has continuously set new goals for corporate responsibility. This most recent recognition from Fortune is certainly a great honor for us, and it means that BP Group will end 2007 on an especially high note."
Part of BP's success has been attributed to its independent assurance statements, good governance structure, high level of public disclosure and multi-stakeholder initiatives like the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative and the US Climate Action Partnership.
Also significant has been BP's focus on greener technologies, including making inroads in the areas of enhanced oil recovery, difficult hydrocarbons and alternative energy.