The head of S&P Dow Jones Indices told Reuters that he removed Tesla from the widespread S&P 500 ESG because of problems, including allegations of racial discrimination and autopilot accidents, while Tesla CEO Elon Musk responded with sharp tweets. including “ESG is a scam”.
The news agency said the “forward and forward” changes in the indexes reflect a broader debate on the indicators used to assess corporate performance in the environment, social governance and management (ESG) growing in the investment sector.
It noted that Tesla has become the most valuable company in the automotive industry, introducing EV and expanding batteries to store electrical networks and solar power systems.
Factors that contributed to the index’s release included Tesla’s lack of published details related to its low-carbon strategy or business codes, Margaret Dorn, head of S&P’s Dow Jones Indices for North America, told Reuters.
Although Tesla’s products help reduce emissions, Dorn told the news agency, his other concerns and lack of disclosure regarding industry counterparts should be of concern to investors who want to judge the company by environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria.
Tesla did not immediately answer questions from Reuters, which noted that the company had previously called ESG methodologies “fundamentally wrong.”
It is reported that Musk wrote on Twitter: “Exxon is in the top 10 best in the world in the environment, social sphere and management (ESG) according to the S&P 500, while Tesla is not on the list! ESG is a scam. He was armed with fake warriors of social justice. “
A spokesman for the index provider told Reuters Musk may have meant a list on the company’s blog of the 10 largest components by market capitalization of the S&P 500 ESG Index after the removal of Tesla and others. The list “is not a ranking of the best companies by ESG,” the spokesman said.
Dorn told Reuters that the Tesla ESG score dropped slightly from the “22” it received last year. At the same time, the average score among other automakers improved, pushing Tesla out of the ESG index due to a rule against including performers with the lowest quartile.
Among other major ESG rating agencies, MSCI gives Tesla an “average” ESG rating, while the Sustainalytics division of Morningstar gives the manufacturer an EV “average risk” rating, according to Reuters, citing the companies ’websites.
The news agency added that the U.S. safety regulator this week launched a special investigation into Tesla’s crash this month in California, among more than 30 crashes being investigated involving advanced driver assistance systems.
In February, the California state agency sued Tesla over allegations that black workers allowed racial discrimination at an assembly plant, adding claims to a number of other lawsuits, Reuters added.