21st Century Business Herald reporter Li Deshangyu reported in BeijingOn August 29, Alibaba Group officially released the “2022 Alibaba Environmental Social and Governance Report” (hereinafter referred to as the “ESG Report”).
The ESG report released by Alibaba covers a total of “repairing a green planet”, “supporting employee development”, “serving a sustainable and beautiful life”, “supporting the high-quality development of small, medium and micro enterprises”, “supporting social inclusion and resilience”, and “promoting public welfare for everyone.” ” and “Building Trust” seven directions.
It is understood that the ESG report released by Alibaba this time is not only in line with the 17 sustainable development goals proposed by the United Nations “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, but also includes topics with Chinese connotations such as promoting common prosperity and rural revitalization.
Chairman and CEO Zhang Yong said in an opening letter titled “Alibaba and its 102-Year Vision: Creating Value Above Business” that ESG not only provides a better response to a range of global risks and challenges The framework for action is increasingly becoming an important criterion for measuring a good company on a global scale.
In the past, society generally believed that ESG reports mainly responded to the requirements of the global capital market, but Zhang Yong believes that ESG is not only an evaluation standard, but also a long-term action framework for the future. Zhang Yong said that ESG should be a yardstick around value, responsibility and risk. “I hope the public will know and understand Alibaba through two reports in the future: one is an earnings report and the other is an ESG report.”
21.6% of electricity comes from clean energy
In the environmental field, Alibaba’s focus has expanded from carbon reduction to lucid waters and lush mountains.
The ESG report released by Alibaba disclosed that during fiscal year 2022, Alibaba reduced carbon emissions by 619,944 tons through energy structure transformation, and 21.6% of the electricity used by Alibaba Cloud came from clean energy; The Lake Water Fund adopts agricultural water protection management measures on 5,000 mu of farmland to reduce water pollution caused by chemical fertilizers and pesticides.
(Exterior view of Alibaba Cloud Zhangbei Data Center. Image source: Alibaba)
In supporting employee development, Alibaba strives to build an equal, respectful, inclusive and diverse culture and working environment. According to the report, by the end of fiscal year 2022, women accounted for 49.5% of all Alibaba employees and 39% of directors and senior management. In addition, a total of 2,007 disabled people work in the Ali family.
In terms of serving a sustainable and better life, Alibaba is committed to bringing a more inclusive and inclusive consumer experience to underdeveloped regions and digitally disadvantaged groups. In fiscal 2022, over 70% of the new annual active consumers will come from lower-tier cities and rural areas. As of the end of fiscal year 2022, Cainiao has built more than 1,000 county-level co-distribution centers across the country, covering more than 400 poverty-stricken counties and more than 50,000 township and village-level logistics sites.
Alibaba is committed to using technology to provide digital tools with lower barriers to entry in helping the high-quality development of small, medium and micro enterprises. Among the 4,620 national-level specialized, specialized, and new “little giant” enterprises identified by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, 65% of them are customers of Alibaba Cloud. In fiscal year 2022, Alibaba’s investment in technology-related fields has historically exceeded 120 billion yuan.
Digital technologies are also helping to increase social inclusion and resilience, providing a buffer against sudden disasters. During the flood season of 2020, DAMO Academy quickly developed an online radar image (SAR) water extraction model, carried out monitoring and analysis of the development of flood disasters, and successively supported flood disaster monitoring in key areas in Jiangxi and Anhui. Since 2020, Cainiao has cooperated with more than 50 global logistics service providers to transport more than 260 million medical-related materials, including vaccines, to more than 150 countries and regions.
In terms of public welfare, in fiscal year 2022, Alibaba’s “New 100 Plan” supported a total of 85 outstanding projects in 49 non-profit organizations; the technical volunteer service platform “Mashang Public Welfare” established by employees spontaneously, a total of more than 6,000 caring geeks participated in it. More than 330 non-profit organizations settled in to provide help.
At the governance level, Alibaba has established a three-tier sustainable development governance structure, embedding ESG into the board of directors, senior management, the group and each business unit, providing long-term organizational guarantee for the implementation of ESG actions. Recently, a risk management committee and a technology ethics committee have been established, and each business department has a “personal information protection officer” to ensure that the level of privacy protection and data security is in an industry-leading position.
Let ESG create business value
The report believes that platform companies are important carriers for ESG actions. There are naturally many ecological participants active on the platform, and the pooling of platform power can amplify social goodwill.
In fiscal year 2022, more than 2.2 million merchants and 500 million consumers on Taobao and Tmall participated in public donations through the “Public Welfare Baby” project; Alibaba and the Ministry of Public Security jointly created the “Reunion System”, an emergency release platform for children’s missing information, which has been released in 6 years. 5,038 pieces of missing children’s information have been linked with all sectors of society, and 4,960 children have been successfully recovered.
The report points out that in order for ESG to truly create business value, it must be fully integrated into business design, return to real scenarios, resolve problems, and promote progress. For example, energy saving and carbon reduction have become the real needs of many small and medium-sized enterprises. Alibaba Cloud’s “Energy Consumption Treasure” optimizes electricity consumption through algorithms. While reducing environmental emissions, it can also save an average of 10% of energy for enterprises. It has been used by nearly 1,700 enterprises. In addition, Alibaba recently released the “88 Carbon Account” system, which can provide a visible “personal carbon bill” for 1 billion consumers.
The report also shows that the process of localization of ESG actions is accelerating, showing a trend of close integration with major domestic issues, allowing the development of ESG to derive new Chinese connotations. Since 2019, Alibaba has dispatched 27 “rural revitalization commissioners” to take root in rural areas; in 2021, sales of 832 poverty alleviation counties on Alibaba’s platform will reach 128.1 billion yuan; AliHealth’s medical assistance training has provided more than 70,000 county-level visits. hospital doctor.
The financial report shows the health of the business, and the ESG report shows the sense of corporate value. “More than ever, we have the responsibility and the ability to make changes.” Zhang Yong said that Alibaba will release an ESG report every year in the future to disclose its phased goals, actions and progress to the society. “ESG should be a yardstick around value, responsibility and risk, driving Alibaba to take practical, clear, and patient action strategies, and by building a highly transparent and rigorous indicator system, always self-examination and self-improvement.”
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