CR performance

Measures and targets

To measure progress on delivering our purpose and creating value for all our stakeholders, we monitor our performance. We report on the issues shown to be of material interest to each stakeholder group.

Supporting communities to be stronger – our work puts us at the heart of local communities in the North West.

Caring for customers through trusted relationships – we put customers at the heart of everything we do.

Creating a great place to work for all our employees – our employees are the face of the company and we could not deliver our services without them.

Protecting and enhancing the environment – we rely on the natural environment and play a key role in improving the water, land and air of the North West.

Delivering a sustainable return to investors – through prudent financial risk management and a strong track record of performance across all components of ESG.

Innovating in partnership with suppliers – we rely on suppliers to deliver our services and to help identify ways to make them better.

From 2020-21 onwards we have adopted a new set of stakeholder measures to demonstrate how we are fulfilling our purpose which is why there is no trend data this year. The progress we have already made to operate in a responsible manner is demonstrated in our 2015-20 measures and targets performance.


The below indices provide us with a framework to tackle global, national, local and industry challenges across environmental, social and economic factors, and/or offer an external perspective on how we are doing.

In addition, the growth of socially responsible investment (SRI) and growing interest in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) performance by many global investment institutions has increased the need to understand the relationship between the corporate responsibility performance and shareholder value.

Index Description Performance
Dow Jones Sustainability Index

The Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) ranks the sustainability approach of the top ten per cent of the world’s biggest companies based on long-term economic, environmental and social criteria.

For 2020, our overall performance was 79% and we retained World Class status for the thirteenth consecutive year. We were awarded SAM Bronze Class in the Sustainability Yearbook 2021.

Carbon Disclosure Project The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) shows our commitment to reducing carbon emissions and adapting to climate change. In 2020, we received a A- rating. Our previous years' responses to the CDP are available here.
FTSE4Good The FTSE4Good Index Series measures the performance of companies who demonstrate strong ESG practices against globally recognised responsible business standards.

United Utilities Group PLC has been included in the FTSE4Good Index Series since 27th June 2001. Latest review June 2020.


Sustainalytics, a Morningstar company, is a leading independent ESG research, ratings and data firm. Its ESG Risk Ratings measure a company’s exposure to industry-specific material ESG risks and how well a company is managing those risks.

In April 2021, United Utilities recieved an ESG Risk Rating of 13.0 and was assessed by Sustainalytics to be at low risk of experiencing material financial impacts from ESG factors. United Utilities is also a Sustainalytics ESG Industry Top Rated Company for 2021. 

Vigeo Eiris


V.E, an affiliate of Moody’s, is a global leader in ESG assessments, data, research, benchmarks and analytics. Leveraging their extensive proprietary database, they equip market players with the ESG insight they need to manage risks and better understand and address their social and environmental impact.

We received an overall Advanced ESG score by V.E of 65 in year 2020. 

Euronext Vigeo Eiris

The Euronext Vigeo Index distinguishes companies achieving the most advanced ESG performances as determined by a review of up to 330 indicators.

United Utilities Group PLC has been confirmed as a constituent of the Euronext UK 20 and Europe 120 Indices in year 2020.
MSCI Provides ESG ratings on an AAA to CCC scale for over 6400 companies according to exposure to industry specific ESG risks and ability to manage those risks relative to peers.  As of September 2021, United Utilities Group PLC received an MSCI ESG rating of AA.
ISS-Oekom ISS ESG's Corporate ESG Rating provides investors with comprehensive portfolio company research on social, environmental and governance factors to help identify and mitigate ESG risks and to capitalize on investment opportunities.

In the annual review of November 2020 our status was assessed as Prime. 

GRESB Rates the quality of information, available in the public domain, about our sustainability governance, implementation and operational performance data, and of our stakeholder engagement practices.

Rated A in October 2021.

London Benchmarking Group We audit our community spend using the London Benchmarking Group (LBG) model. We assess spend in terms of employee time, cash and in kind contributions. Our total investment in 2019/20 was £2.26 million.