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Corporate Environmental Reporting Practices

Corporate Environmental Reporting Practices

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Corporate Environmental Reporting Practices

 

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Abstract on Corporate Environmental Reporting Practices

Environmental issues have emerged in recent decades as a major aspect of the discussion of the 
problems of economic growth and development. Environmental problems associated with 
industrial activities in the final decades of the last century have heightened public concerns about the non-financial performance of corporations and increased pressure for the disclosure of environmental information. Over the past decades, there have been plethoras of literature on 
corporate environmental disclosures, including studies majorly from developed countries, while 
the same is not true of developing countries, particularly Nigeria. Moreso, while there is an 
extensive research on the role of the Global Reporting Initiative and the International 
Organization for Standardization (ISO) guidelines in determining corporate environmental 
performance indicators and the extent of disclosures in annual report in developed economies, in contrast, there is a dearth of studies conducted in the context of developing economies. To this end, this research investigated the extent and nature of corporate environmental reporting 
practice among listed firms in Nigeria and South Africa. Also, using the stakeholder theory as 
motivation for corporate environmental disclosures, the research examined the perception lobby 
groups on the disclosure  of environmental performance information and the corporate 
relationship with host community. To achieve this, a grand total of 900 copies of questionnaire 
were distributed among members of the selected state/provinces using the Yaro Yamani sample 
selection formula in determine the sample size of the study. In addition, while the content 
analysis technique was used as a basis for eliciting data from the annual report and corporate 
websites of the selected companies, the multiple regression method of data analysis was used to 
investigate the relationships that exist between  operating performance, financial leverage 
(nature), size of firms‟ and the level of corporate environmental disclosure   among the selected 
listed firms in Nigeria and South Africa. The research as part of its findings observed that there is a significant positive relationship between the operating performance, size of firms and the level of corporate environmental disclosures among selected firms in Nigeria. This is however 
consistent with existing prior studies. The study also observed that a significant negative 
relationship exists between  the financial leverage of firms (proxied by debt -to-equity ratio) and the extent of corporate environmental disclosure. The study therefore concludes that despite the disclosure level noticed among firms,  corporate environmental reporting practice in developing countries like Nigeria and South Africa is still very  adhoc, general, self-laudatory and voluntary in nature.

 

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