Countries’ ESG Scores Decline for Second Consecutive Year

Global investment firm abrdn’s Research Institute’s annual Global Macro ESG Index data shows ESG scores globally have suffered a decline for a second consecutive year. The index ranks and scores 135 countries based on 20 UN-aligned ESG indicators, and this year found scores to be lower compared last year. The lower ESG scores were accredited to a loss of freedom of movement coupled with declines in life expectancy, employment and social equality. Governance factors saw the biggest and most consistent falls, continuing a trend the index has exhibited since it was launched in 2012. Brazil and India saw the sharpest regional declines, followed by Myanmar, Mali and Afghanistan. The UK’s performance across several indicators also saw lower scores given for freedom of expression and from violence, civil society participation and civil liberties. Environmental scores saw a slight pick up during 2022, including global carbon emissions intensity-related scores. While abrdn’s Research Institute commended the US for its improved governance scores, the country remains a laggard on indicators including CO2 intensity and growing income inequality.  

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