BMW, Norsk Hydro Among the World's Most Sustainable Companies

BMW, Norsk Hydro Among the World's Most Sustainable Companies

In the ninth annual survey of the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes, Norwegian aluminum company Norsk Hydro took the overall top score, while BMW topped the automotive index for the third year running.

The survey has been conducted every year since 1999 by the Zurich-based SAM Group, and evaluates the companies in 18 supersectors within the Dow Jones and STOXX classifications. BMW announced its results yesterday, saying that it is the only company in the automotive sector to have made the sustainability indexes every year since their creation.

Norsk Hydro, Norway's largest publicly traded industrial company, scored very high across the three dimensions of the survey: economic, environmental and social dimensions are taken into account in the ranking. The report cites Norsk Hydro's "excellent risk management and compliance systems" as reasons for its success in the survey, and cites the company's smelter in Sunndal, Norway, as an example of how innovation can improve energy use and lower emissions.

BMW was recognized for a range of achievements, including its efficiency enhancements and its steady work on developing hybrid technologies. Although the report notes that BMW's focus on the premium auto market results in "rather high" CO2 emissions, the company's commitments to lower its overall footprint have offset the emissions of its high-end cars.

The SAM report offers high praise for Novo Nordisk, the Danish pharmaceutical company. The report notes that the company's scores are consistently among the highest across all the assessment criteria, and that Novo Nordisk is "particularly strong in the social dimension where it achieved the industry top ratings in human capital development, corporate citizenship/philanthropy, social reporting, animal testing and bioethics."

The SAM Group analyzes the economic, environmental and social performance of approximately 2500 companies and selects the best in each industry for the Dow Jones Sustainability Indexes. Overall 42 new companies were added to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index, and 33 companies will drop off the list. More information about the report, as well as selected downloads about each industry leader and regional rankings, are available at