In our 2016 sustainability report, we provide descriptions of the company’s strategy and performance regarding material economic, environmental and social issues. Our annual report, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Form 10-K filing and proxy statement detail our financial and governance information; these documents can be found on our website.
Our sustainability report was prepared in accordance with the Core option of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines and associated Oil and Gas Sector Supplement. The report is also based on the Oil and Gas Industry Guidance on Voluntary Sustainability Reporting document jointly developed by IPIECA (the global oil and gas industry organization for environmental and social issues), the American Petroleum Institute and the International Oil and Gas Producers Association, as well as the 10 principles of the United Nations (UN) Global Compact. A GRI Content Index, cross-referenced with IPIECA indicators and the UN Global Compact principles, is provided on pages 56–58 of the report. An expanded GRI Index is available on our website.
Consistent with GRI G4 materiality guidance, we prioritized new and emerging issues important to our stakeholders when developing the content for our sustainability report. Engagement with our stakeholders – which include employees, suppliers, customers, communities, shareholders, governmental and nongovernmental organizations, industry peers and academics – enables us to strengthen our license to operate and brings increased focus to our transparency goals.
In 2015 we conducted a survey of select industry peers and a subset of priority external stakeholder groups to validate and expand upon our prior materiality assessments. We then supplemented the survey results with desktop research on a larger group of peers and stakeholders by reviewing public reports and websites documenting key issues for our industry. This process allowed us to validate that stakeholder expectations are being addressed. The material issues identified by the survey, which have informed our environment, health, safety and social responsibility strategy and helped to define the boundaries of this report, are presented on the Reporting Boundaries page. We validate this list each year by conducting reviews of issues raised through our enterprise risk management process and those receiving attention from Hess’ and our peers’ shareholders in a number of sustainability surveys, as well as those identified through other ongoing benchmarking efforts.
Included within the scope of our sustainability report are the principal facilities and assets operated by Hess Corporation and our subsidiaries during calendar year 2016, unless otherwise indicated. Data presented are gross figures from operated facilities, unless specified otherwise.
We report some quantitative environment, health and safety data on a normalized basis to facilitate year-on-year comparisons. We report GHG emissions on both an operated and equity share basis in accordance with the GRI G4 Oil and Gas Sector Supplement and the IPIECA Petroleum Industry Guidelines for Reporting GHG Emissions (2nd edition, May 2011).
We also report our social investments for our operated assets, joint ventures and nonoperated facilities in which we hold a significant interest. The table on the Reporting Boundaries page provides a cross-reference with the relevant G4 categories for each issue and identifies the boundary for each issue.
We completed our transformation to an exploration and production company in 2014 after exiting our downstream business, which included refining, retail, energy marketing and energy trading. Historical safety and environmental data from 2013 and prior were restated to reflect the upstream (exploration and production) business only, with a few exceptions. For example, individual divestitures that did not meet the materiality threshold for removal from our new 2014 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions baseline – as delineated in the Hess GHG Protocol – are included in the restated data. In addition, downstream-focused social investment spend, which represented less than 5 percent of the overall expenditure, was deemed immaterial for restatement purposes. Therefore, our historical social investment spend was not restated.
When conducting our annual internal review of performance data for the 2015 report, we built upon our typical review process and initiated a more detailed investigation of the performance data for 2015 and prior years. Based on this analysis, we revised many of the historical environmental values stated in prior sustainability reports to improve the quality of our dataset.
Internal Quality Assurance
Our internal information systems promote the centralized collection of data from Hess-operated and joint venture assets around the world. In order to evaluate accuracy and reliability, we conduct quality assurance/quality control reviews and validation of both aggregated and facility-level data. Individual numbers in the charts, tables and text may not precisely sum to the total amounts shown due to rounding. All currency found in this report is in U.S. dollars.
Our 2016 sustainability report has been assured by ERM Certification and Verification Services (ERM CVS), a third party that annually reviews our sustainability data and self-declared GRI “in accordance” option. This external review helps to ensure consistent and objective data collection and reporting of our sustainability performance. The Independent Assurance Statement is provided on page 59 of our report.
ERM CVS’s assurance in years prior to 2014 included a review of downstream data, as well as current exploration and production activities. As a result, the prior years’ data that has been restated or revised has not been assured.
In addition to providing assurance in relation to our sustainability report, ERM CVS also conducts a separate verification of the GHG emissions data provided in this report and in our CDP Climate Change response.