Environmental incidents in a developing country and corporate environmental disclosures : a study of a multinational gas company

Islam, Muhammad Azizul and Islam, Muhammad Aminul 2011, Environmental incidents in a developing country and corporate environmental disclosures : a study of a multinational gas company, Society and business review, vol. 6, no. 3, pp. 229-248.

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Title Environmental incidents in a developing country and corporate environmental disclosures : a study of a multinational gas company
Author(s) Islam, Muhammad Azizul
Islam, Muhammad Aminul
Journal name Society and business review
Volume number 6
Issue number 3
Start page 229
End page 248
Publisher Emerald
Place of publication Bingley, England
Publication date 2011
ISSN 1746-5680
Keyword(s) Bangladesh
Developing countries
Multinational companies
Corporate social responsibility
Disclosure
Gas industry
Environmental blowouts
Summary Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to examine the environmental disclosure initiatives of Niko Resources Ltd – a Canada-based multinational oil and gas company – following the two major environmental blowouts at a gas field in Bangladesh in 2005. As part of the examination, the authors particularly focus on whether Niko’s disclosure strategy was associated with public concern pertaining to the blowouts.
Design/methodology/approach – The authors reviewed news articles about Niko’s environmental incidents in Bangladesh and Niko’s communication media, including annual reports, press releases and stand-alone social responsibility report over the period 2004-2007, to understand whether news media attention as proxy for public concern has an impact on Niko’s disclosure practices in relation to the affected local community in Bangladesh.
Findings – The findings show that Niko did not provide any non-financial environmental information within its annual reports and press releases as a part of its responsibility to the local community which was affected by the blowouts, but it did produce a stand-alone report to address the issue. However, financial environmental disclosures, such as the environmental contingent liability disclosure, were adequately provided through annual reports to meet the regulatory requirements concerning environmental persecutions. The findings also suggest that Niko’s non-financial disclosure within a stand-alone report was associated with the public pressures as measured by negative media coverage towards the Niko blowouts.
Research limitations/implications – This paper concludes that the motive for Niko’s non-financial environmental disclosure, via a stand-alone report, reflected survival considerations:
the company’s reaction did not suggest any real attempt to hold broader accountability for its activities in a developing country.
Originality/value – This is the first known paper that investigates a multinational company’s disclosure behavior in relation to environmental incidents which occurred in a local community.
Language eng
Field of Research 150106 Sustainability Accounting and Reporting
Socio Economic Objective 900299 Property, Business Support Services and Trade not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30041218

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Business and Law
School of Accounting, Economics and Finance
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