In our 2019 Sustainability Report, we provide descriptions of Hess’ strategy and 2019 performance regarding material economic, social and environmental issues. Our annual report, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Form 10-K filing and proxy statement detail our financial and governance information and can be found on our website. Additional sustainability and investor information is available at hess.com/investors.
This report was prepared in accordance with the Core option of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards.
Our reporting is also informed by:
- the Oil and Gas Industry Guidance on Voluntary Sustainability Reporting, which was 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;
- the United Nations (U.N.) Global Compact’s Ten Principles;
- key environmental, social and governance ratings and scorecards;
- recommendations from the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures; and
- •oil and gas industry metrics from the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB).
An index of GRI, IPIECA, SASB and U.N. Global Compact reporting indicators is available at hess.com/sustainability/sustainability-reports/gri-index.
We determined the content for this report by applying the GRI’s reporting principles; for example, we considered our operations and performance in the wider context of sustainability issues as well as ensured stakeholder inclusiveness and completeness of information. Consistent with the GRI Standards’ materiality guidance, we identified and prioritized new and emerging issues important to our stakeholders. Engagement with our stakeholders – which include employees, suppliers, customers, communities, shareholders, government bodies, 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, including key topics and disclosures from the GRI’s G4 Oil and Gas Sector Supplement. This process allowed us to validate that stakeholder expectations are being addressed.
Through that survey, as well as an annual, document-based assessment of key stakeholder perspectives and Hess’ operational and regulatory risks, we have identified the 10 most material issues for our company:
- Regulatory Assurance
- Water Management
- Transportation Impacts
- Emergency Preparedness and Response
- Process Safety and Spills
- Community Engagement
- Climate Change and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions
- Stakeholder Engagement
- Transparency in Business Conduct
- Human Rights and Security
These material issues have informed our environment, health, safety and social responsibility (EHS & SR) strategy and helped to define the boundaries of this report. See reporting boundaries for each of these issues at hess.com/sustainability/approach-to-reporting/boundaries-for-material-issues.
While we have been validating these issues on an annual basis since 2015, in 2019 we engaged a third-party consultant to help us refresh our materiality assessment and update our EHS & SR strategy. The approach used for the materiality assessment, which was completed in early 2020, is consistent with approaches and guidance provided by leading standards bodies, including the GRI, IPIECA and ISO 26000; it also considers the SASB materiality profile for the oil and gas industry as an additional reference point.
For the materiality assessment, we first developed an initial list of potential sustainability topics through desktop research. This research involved reviewing public reports and websites – including those of our oil and gas industry peers and other important stakeholders – that document key issues for our industry. We then validated and prioritized the topics through a stakeholder engagement process, which included a survey and workshop to obtain internal viewpoints and interviews with a sampling of key external stakeholders.
Through this exercise, we confirmed that the key issues driving our current EHS & SR strategy are still relevant. We also found that certain issues have been receiving more or less stakeholder emphasis over the past five years. We are currently working to validate the results of the materiality assessment through benchmarking and additional internal workshops. That process will aid in developing an updated EHS & SR strategy, including setting goals and targets for our material topics. We plan to share our plan forward (for post 2020) in next year’s sustainability report.
Included within the scope of this report are the facilities and assets operated by Hess Corporation and our subsidiaries during calendar year 2019, unless otherwise indicated. Data presented are gross figures from operated facilities, unless specified otherwise.
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 (3rd edition, 2015), as well as IPIECA’s 2016 report Estimating Petroleum Industry Value Chain (Scope 3) Greenhouse Gas Emissions. We report social investments for our operated assets, joint ventures and nonoperated facilities in which we hold a significant interest. Our workforce metrics include data for contractors whose hours we track. See our expanded performance data at hess.com/sustainability/performance-data/key-sustainability-metrics
We believe our approach to restating data complies with the GRI Standards’ principle of comparability and specific disclosure regarding restatements of information, as well as IPIECA guidance. For GHG emissions, in cases of acquisitions and divestitures and other source ownership and control changes, we adjust our base year emissions if the change exceeds 10% of the original base year emissions total. The exact timing of the adjustment depends on several factors, as described in the Hess GHG Inventory Protocol. We also review and adjust targets included as part of our annual incentive plan formula to account for divestitures as needed. In 2017 and 2018, this included restating our targets and associated annual metrics for severe safety and environmental incident rates to account for the Permian, Equatorial Guinea and Utica divestitures.
Access the Hess GHG Inventory Protocol at hess.com/sustainability/climate-change-energy
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 references in the report are in U.S. dollars.
Our 2019 Sustainability Report, including our sustainability data and self-declared GRI “in accordance” status, was assured by ERM Certification and Verification Services (see page 62 of our 2019 report). This external review helps to ensure consistent and objective data collection and reporting of our sustainability performance.
In addition to providing assurance in relation to our sustainability report, ERM Certification and Verification Services also conducts a separate verification of the GHG emissions data provided in the report and in our CDP Climate Change response.