SDGs and Materiality
The work done to define the priority SDGs was carried out in partnership with an external consultancy firm and sought to relate sustainability issues to the Company’s socioenvironmental challenges, to the opportunities to generate value, and to positive impacts for CESP and its stakeholders. SDG prioritization was the outcome of extensive engagement with our internal audience, which actively participated in discussions, workshops, and studies that were essential to understand where CESP is and what path we want to follow to get where we want to be in the future.
It was a construction done by many hands, through these processes:
• Analysis of CESP’s strategic positioning: Analysis of documents and interviews with executives, considering ten criteria – strategy, guidelines, opportunities, challenges, audience, governance, indicators, investments, objectives, and actions.
• Analysis of sector benchmarks: Evaluation of companies operating out of the electric sector and their position relative to the SDGs, recommendations made by the B3 Sustainability Index (ISE)1 , and the correlations with the electric sector, according to the Global Compact’s study on the Power Sector.
• Engagement of the workforce: Holding meetings and workshops with the company’s leadership to get to know and discuss the SDGs, in addition to producing communication materials for CESP’s entire internal audience. After completing this work, which relied on the participation of our employees at different hierarchical levels, positions, and activities, we arrived at ten priority SDGs, five to be addressed by 2023 and other five by 2028.
As the companies and organizations’ value creation migrates from tangible to intangible, where reputation and brand, the ability to innovate and to relate to different stakeholders is more valued than industrial parks and fixed assets, companies are faced with numerous social, economic, and environmental issues. These issues need to be addressed and managed appropriately to determine which are most significant for the business, for the worldview, and for the profile that the company wants to have.
In this regard, defining what is material, or building materiality, is the process that identifies and prioritizes the topics that reflect the most significant impacts of the Company and its stakeholders.
Discussing and learning about the organizations’ economic, social, and environmental impacts is part of the challenge of building a better and sustainable world for current and future generations, as each company has its own context and needs.
Hence the importance of each organization precisely knowing the impacts it has through its materiality matrix.
And it was to define this materiality matrix, with the material topics, that CESP worked in partnership with a company specialized in this process in 2020.
In direct and indirect consultation with stakeholders – public authorities, employees, leaders, customers, suppliers, investors, and communities – and by reviewing the sustainability context, 18 initial topics were defined, evaluated pursuant to the GRI (Global Reporting Initiative) materiality principles. These topics were discussed internally, and resulted in 12 material topics for CESP for a business cycle of up to three years (until 2023):