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Environmental performance, legislation and annual report disclosure: the case of acid rain and Falconbridge

Nola Buhr (Binghamton University, Binghamton, New York, USA)

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal

ISSN: 0951-3574

Article publication date: 1 May 1998

Abstract

This paper examines the relationship between environmental performance, legislation and annual report disclosure using the case of Falconbridge and sulphur dioxide emissions over a period from 1964 to 1991. Legitimacy theory and political economy theory are used to evaluate the disclosure. Two key questions are addressed: How did the corporation respond to changing government regulations for sulphur dioxide abatement? and How did the corporation choose to present these abatement activities in its annual reports? These questions are examined through the methodologies of historiography, interviews and content analysis. Falconbridge has always been in compliance with SO2 regulations (albeit with a government extension in the late 1970s) and has consistently provided disclosure discussing the technological aspects of sulphur dioxide abatement. While political economy theory has explanatory power, legitimacy theory offers a more compelling explanation.

Keywords

Citation

Buhr, N. (1998), "Environmental performance, legislation and annual report disclosure: the case of acid rain and Falconbridge", Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 11 No. 2, pp. 163-190. https://doi.org/10.1108/09513579810215455

Publisher

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MCB UP Ltd

Copyright © 1998, MCB UP Limited