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Sustainable PNNL - Balancing social, environmental, and economic needs for a more sustainable future

GRI Report Content

Materiality and Sustainability Context: This report highlights PNNL's sustainability performance in both the context of the work we do and how we do it. To define the content of this report we applied the principles of stakeholder inclusiveness, sustainability context, and materiality.

We measured and reported on those aspects of the GRI indicators that are closely tied to our mission, values, and business strategy and that would substantially influence the assessments of our key stakeholders. Our approach to identifying and soliciting input from our key PNNL stakeholders is described under Stakeholder Engagement.

The content of the report was also based on analysis of our organizational performance in 2011—and relative to previous years—across a broad set of economic, social, and environmental topics. We focus on topics that are not only of local and regional importance, but of national and, in some cases, global significance, which is our duty as a national laboratory for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

The print report focuses on PNNL's 12 sustainability priorities, associated annual and long-term goals, and our performance against those goals during 2011. This information is presented in our sustainability honeycomb graphic in the introduction and in the Sustainability Performance Scorecard at the front of the report. It also includes case studies and examples of actions we take to drive toward our sustainability objectives.

PNNL's 12 sustainability priorities were established based on our assessment of issues that are material to our DOE customer, our employees, and our community. In many cases these goals and performance measures are codified in our operating contract with DOE, and the results will influence decisions DOE makes about our organization. Performance measures that are less significant to our customers and our employees, and less impactful to our operations, are included in the GRI Performance Indicators table for completeness. The scope of topics covered in both the PDF and Web versions of our report include the all core, and some additional, GRI indicators and provide a representative view of our significant economic, environmental, and social impacts.

Accuracy, Reliability, and Comparability: PNNL tried to be as accurate, reliable, and consistent as possible with its information throughout the report. We have institutionalized, centrally-managed data collection processes for all of our GRI and related sustainability performance metrics. A data dictionary is maintained with a description of each metric, the data steward, the data source, the calculation approach, reporting frequency, and historical actual data reported. This is distributed to the data stewards with each data request to help ensure consistent and accurate reporting from year to year. When errors in past reporting have been identified, we correct the historically reported numbers and note the reason for any changes. We have included five years of historical data on our website to enable stakeholders to assess the organization's performance, both during the reporting period and over time.

We have reported in units that are consistent with the GRI's G3 Guidelines in most cases and noted the source of calculation methodologies used, when appropriate. In the few instances where different reporting units are used (e.g., kBtu instead of joules, gallons instead of cubic feet), it is to ensure consistency with the way we report data to our primary customer and stakeholder, the DOE.

Balance: We have sought to present the information in a balanced way, by not just highlighting the positive aspects and work already done, but also identifying areas for improvement. Data and graphics in the summary table at the front of the report, as well as 'opportunity for improvement' call-outs throughout the report, are intended to make it easy for the reader to quickly identify where we are doing well and where believe we can do better.

Timeliness: This report is for fiscal year (FY) 2011 and all years are reported as fiscal years, which run from October 1 to September 30. We strive to complete our annual report no later than the summer of the following fiscal year to ensure that data is available to our stakeholders in a timely manner.

Clarity: Our goal is to ensure that information is understandable and accessible to stakeholders reading the report by using non-technical terminology, limiting the use of acronyms, providing enough information for stakeholders to make informed decisions about the organization between our summary PDF report and website, and by making information in the report easy to get to through links in the GRI Index.

Report Boundary and Completeness: While PNNL is operated by Battelle, the boundary of this report is restricted to the activities that occur by the employees and operations of PNNL. The reporting boundaries include government-owned and contractor-operated facilities, Battelle-owned facilities, and leased facilities that are jointly managed at PNNL as a 'consolidated laboratory.' It does not include Battelle's corporate headquarters, or other facilities operated by Battelle outside of the consolidated laboratory, unless otherwise noted.

For completeness, this report covers all topics that are material to our organization and our stakeholders, which fall within these operational boundaries.

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