The Pandemic And Global Climate Action, Among Others Will Be Key ESG Topics For 2021, Report Says

NEW YORK, Jan. 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- (S&P Global Ratings) -- Over the past year, the global economy faced an unprecedented string of compounding environmental, social, and governance (ESG)-related disruptors. In 2021, these ESG forces will continue to play out on a larger stage.

In "Sustainability In 2021: A Bird's-Eye View Of The Top Five ESG Topics," published today, we highlight five topics we believe will dominate the ESG space in 2021:

  • The continuing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic;
  • Growing momentum for global climate action;
  • The fight for equality;
  • The expansion of the sustainable debt market and better standardization for sustainability metrics; and
  • Greater emphasis on the biodiversity crisis.

These are only a few of the many ESG trends that will emerge and evolve in 2021. Given the fast-moving ESG world, we know that some ESG topics that hide below the surface erupt suddenly while others simmer and bubble up slowly.

"We expect the ESG landscape to continue to evolve as current ESG issues mature, new themes emerge, and the growing awareness of the intersections between our global society and the natural world make ESG even more pertinent," said sustainable finance analyst Corinne Bendersky.

Other hot topics that will likely garner some attention in 2021 include shifting consumer preferences and greater demand for sustainable products and services. Further shifts in the energy sector, from the future of oil to the role of hydrogen, will also play out in 2021.

As we make way into the new year, we'll observe how ESG-related rhetoric translates to real results as stakeholders hold companies to account.

This report does not constitute a rating action.

The report is available to subscribers of RatingsDirect at If you are not a RatingsDirect subscriber, you may purchase a copy of the report by calling (1) 212-438-7280 or sending an e-mail to Ratings information can also be found on S&P Global Ratings' public website by using the Ratings search box located in the left column at Members of the media may request a copy of this report by contacting the media representative provided.

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For further information: PRIMARY CREDIT ANALYSTS, Corinne B Bendersky, New York + 44 20 7176 0216,; Michael T Ferguson, CFA, CPA, New York, + 1 (212) 438 7670,; SECONDARY CONTACT, Michael Wilkins, London, + 44 20 7176 3528,; MEDIA CONTACT, Luke Shane, New York, + 1 (212) 438 1244,