Pandemic Doesn't Stop Cummins From Progressing on Sustainability Priorities

Jun 29, 2021 8:00 AM ET

Global power leader Cummins was able to make progress on its environmental, social and governance priorities despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the company’s new 2020 Sustainability Progress Report shows.

The report includes a number of company firsts and records in 2020, including a record number of global patents, a record recycling rate, a record low health and safety Incidence Rate, the first virtual Hydrogen Day and the company’s key role in the first hydrogen-powered passenger train. While COVID-19 left an indelible mark on the company, it did not define Cummins in 2020.

The pandemic triggered its own set of company records and firsts, including a record drop in revenues followed shortly by a record increase in orders as Cummins’ customers performed essential tasks such as the transportation of food and medicine. But it did not keep the company from addressing a host of key sustainability issues, among them climate change, the environment, cybersecurity, innovation, diversity and racial equity, and women’s rights and equality.

“I am proud of what we achieved in 2020 and am optimistic about the opportunities ahead to continue powering a more prosperous world,” Chairman and CEO Tom Linebarger said looking back on 2020 in the introduction to the report.

In addition to the examples of exceptional company performances, the 2020 progress report for the first time includes a race and ethnicity breakdown of Cummins’ U.S. workforce, adding transparency to the company’s pledge to be a leader in fighting systemic racism in the United States. The report also includes a new section on the company’s cybersecurity efforts, and expanded disclosures on the Cummins Board of Directors as well as risk management.

The document also includes special reports on the company’s vision for an innovation-focused path to carbon neutrality and the collaborative effort involving everyone from the plant floor to the company’s board to safely reopen after the pandemic began taking a toll on communities around the world.

Cummins has been producing a sustainability report since 2003. The company also reports to several sustainability platforms including the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and earlier this year, the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).