Our materiality review identifies top concerns for the company and our stakeholders – find out more in Suncor’s 2013 Report on Sustainability

Materiality review identifies top company & stakeholder concerns - Suncor 2013 Report on Sustainability

Materiality review identifies top concerns to company and stakeholders – find out more in Suncor’s 2013 Report on Sustainability

Materiality review identifies top priorities for both the company and our stakeholders in Suncor’s 2013 Report on Sustainability

View the latest Report on Sustainability

Materiality review

The intent of Suncor's materiality review process is to ensure the content included in our annual Report on Sustainability reflects the key environmental, economic and social issues that are considered to be most critical to the company and its stakeholders.

Of the identified issues, those considered to be of the highest importance are highlighted in our print summary. These topics and others are then covered in further detail as part of our comprehensive web-based report.

For example, land use and water withdrawal are issues considered to be of crucial importance to Suncor and our stakeholders. As a result, these topics would be found in both our print and online reports. A listing of charitable donations, however, would be found only in our online report. While this topic is important, it is less acute to our operations and the majority of stakeholders.

Suncor's materiality review for our 2013 Report on Sustainability followed a two-step process:

1. Review of materials and identification of issues

Based on the framework provided by AccountAbility's 'Five-Part' test, we conducted an in-depth review and analysis of Suncor's:

  • corporate objectives
  • programs and risk factors
  • news releases and media coverage
  • internal newsletters and publications

Information from ongoing stakeholder dialogues, in addition to feedback from Suncor's annual multi-stakeholder forum, was also used to identify significant sustainability issues relevant to Suncor. Our annual multi-stakeholder forum is particularly important to this process as it allows us a venue to highlight, discuss and address complex issues with a wide range of key stakeholders and document their feedback. During this forum, we talk about the challenges we face and also how we can work to address these issues.

Our issues identification process further included:

  • a thorough review of numerous sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) reports
  • an analysis of topics identified through our internal issues management process
  • input from across Suncor's business areas

This comprehensive review produced a number of potentially material issues to be evaluated for inclusion in this year's report.

2. Rating material issues

In early 2013, a cross-functional team of employees from across Suncor's business areas convened to evaluate the sustainability issues identified in the previous step.

For each candidate material issue, team members were asked to determine the degree of impact and importance to Suncor as well as the degree of impact and importance to stakeholders.

Each individual issue was plotted on the materiality matrix below. This diagram represents a sampling of the pertinent issues identified during the materiality review.

The diagram contains 22 issues, ranging from less material in the lower left corner and increasing in material importance, both to Suncor and our stakeholders, up to the right corner. Click on each circle to identify the issue and be directed to links below for additional content within the report.

Materiality review

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Economic performance

Carbon footprint

Water management

Responsible community development

Aboriginal relations

Health and safety


Tailings management

Environmental exceedances

Climate policy

Air quality

Land use and access

Human rights

Business ethics

Employee attraction, retention and development

Corporate governance



Sustainable supply chain

Climate adaptation


Waste management