Environmental Accounting Practice: Analyzing the Extent and Qualification of Environmental Disclosures of Turkish Companies Located in BIST-XKURY Index
Environmental pollution has detrimental effects on the quality of our life and its scope has reached such an extent that measures are being taken both at the national and international levels to reduce, prevent and mitigate its impact on social, economic and political spheres. Therefore, awareness of environmental problems has been increasing among stakeholders and accordingly among companies. It is seen that corporate reporting is expanding beyond environmental performance. Primary purpose of publishing an environmental report is to provide specific audiences with useful, meaningful information. This paper is intended to analyze the extent and qualification of environmental disclosures of Turkish publicly quoted firms and see how it varies from one sector to another. The data for the study were collected from annual activity reports of companies, listed on the corporate governance index (BIST-XKURY) of Istanbul Stock Exchange. Content analysis was the research methodology used to measure the extent of environmental disclosure. Accordingly, 2015 annual activity reports of companies that carry out business in some particular fields were acquired from Capital Market Board, websites of Public Disclosure Platform and companies’ own websites. These reports were categorized into five main aspects: Environmental policies, environmental management systems, environmental protection and conservation activities, environmental awareness and information on environmental lawsuits. Subsequently, each component was divided into several variables related to what each firm is supposed to disclose about environmental information. In this context, the nature and scope of the information disclosed on each item were assessed according to five different ways (N.I: No Information; G.E.: General Explanations; Q.E.: Qualitative Detailed Explanations; N.E.: Quantitative (numerical) Detailed Explanations; Q.&N.E.: Both Qualitative and Quantitative Explanations).