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Low carbon growth is now widely accepted as fundamental to generating long term shareholder value, avoiding dangerous climate change and helping the global economy recover from recent turmoil1.

It is for these reasons that in 2011, the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) sent its annual request to the Global 5002 companies on behalf of 551 investors with US$71 trillion of assets, asking them to measure and report what climate change means for their business. This year, 81% (404) of corporations from the Global 500 responded to the CDP questionnaire.

These responses provide a valuable insight into how companies are preparing for a resource constrained world and show a shift in company strategy to prepare better for a low carbon economy and act on the business opportunities.

The report looks at how companies that are strategically focused on accelerating low carbon growth – i.e. those in the Carbon Performance Leadership Index (CPLI) – tend to perform better, not only in terms of greenhouse gas emissions management, but also in terms of financial performance.