FRANKFURT (Reuters) - BT <BT,K>, Danone <DANO.PA>, Microsoft <MSFT.O> and Sony <6758.T> are among 178 companies with top marks in the latest global ranking of transparency and action on climate change.
Japan and the U.S. were the countries with the headquarters of the most 'A List' companies individually, while regionally, Europe as a bloc was home to the highest number.
Companies are coming under pressure from customers and investors to step up efforts to help slow climate change in accordance with the 2015 Paris climate agreement to phase out greenhouse gas emissions by shifting away from fossil fuels.
Non-profit CDP, formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project, ranked 2% of more than 8,000 companies that submitted environmental data in the A List of its index.
The A List is released to coincide with this week's World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, which brings together leading figures from business, government and civil society.
Among examples of positive steps, CDP said Japanese electronics giant Sony was making gaming consoles more energy-efficient and Danish toy-maker LEGO aims to use sustainable materials for packaging by 2025 and all products by 2030.
CDP said the STOXX Global Climate Change Leaders index, based on the CDP A List, outperformed the STOXX global 1800 of major firms by 5.5% a year over a 7-year period.
"Leading on climate action is good business in today's economy," Steven Tebbe, managing director of CDP Europe, said in a statement accompanying the report.
Leading global names on the list included AstraZeneca <AZN.L>, L'Oreal <OREP.PA>, Sainsburys <SBRY.L>, Nestle <NESN.S>, LEGO, Walmart <WMT.N> and Bayer <BAYGn.DE>.
Microsoft this week set a new ambition by pledging to remove as much carbon as it has emitted in 45 years and investment manager BlackRock <BLK.N> said it would tie its engagements to sustainability.
(Reporting by Vera Eckert, editing by Alexander Smith)