VERBUND Presents Sustainability Report 2003

6/1/2004Wien

VERBUND has published the sustainability report for the business year 2003. In this report, Austria’s leading electricity company is presenting its performance in the three pillars of sustainability - economy, environment, and social matters.

Sound economic results, an environment management system realized for many years, and comprehensive measures in the areas human resources and social matters are the basis of VERBUND sustainability.

For its first sustainability report on the year 2002, VERBUND won the 1st prize for the best sustainability report at the AERA award (Austrian Environmental Reporting Award) of the Chamber of Economic Trustees. One of the reasons was that VERBUND was the only company to meet the requirement of testability by an external entity. Thus VERBUND is a pioneer in Austria as to the relatively new topic of sustainability.

Highlights of the second report:

  • The Verbundgesellschaft results for the year 2003 increased, following very good results in the preceding years.
  • More than one third of the VERBUND production capacities - or half of all of its power plants - obtained the environment certification according to EMAS or ISO 14001, having been audited for the ecological and social qualities of the locations.
  • Comprehensive training measures for all groups of employees - newcomers as well as older employees - ensure the high qualification and competence of VERBUND manpower.

In recent years, international stock exchanges introduced special indices for sustainable companies. The merely operational approach for rating companies was enlarged by sustainability aspects in the areas environment and social matters. Rating agencies collect the sustainability performance of companies in comprehensive questionnaires. On the basis of the ratings of these agencies companies are included in sustainable stock exchange indices and sustainability funds.

VERBUND was included in FTSE4Good, the sustainability index of the London Stock Exchange, in 2002. In the course of the audit of the FTSE4Good index series in September 2003 the membership of VERBUND as one of three Austrian companies in this sustainability index was confirmed. For VERBUND stakeholders, this provides additional evidence of the Group’s intensive and responsible approach with regard to sustainability.

In 1995 it was resolved to have VERBUND power stations and plants certified according to the environmental management systems EMAS and ISO 14001. Today, 62 of the 123 power plants have the ISO 14001 certification, and for the high-voltage grid of VERBUND-Austrian Power Grid the implementation of an environmental management system is planned.

VERBUND invested 822 EUR for training per employee in 2003; in 2002 it had been around 700 euros. Ensuring a high degree of technical and personal competence of the employees is an important milestone in the company’s personnel management. The trainings range from special programs for newcomers to group-specific projects such as “Qualification VERBUND—Austrian Thermal Power”. This project focuses on future-oriented analysis of job specifications and, based on the results, a specific qualification program.