Defining our sustainability focus with our stakeholders


To begin our journey towards meeting tomorrow’s sustainable energy needs, we conducted an initial assessment of topics that are material for our internal and external stakeholders. Throughout this process, we collaborated with an external third-party to maintain an objective and independent view on material topics.

Our material topics

Our stakeholder assessment started with the creation and analysis of a list of topics most relevant for the fossil fuel and biofuel industry in terms of industry impact on environmental, social and economic areas, and in terms of a topics’ relevance to VARO’s value chain. This list of topics was prepared in accordance with the topics suggested by IPIECA Guidelines, GRI Standards and SASB Standards for Refining & Marketing, Midstream and Biofuels, and also captures material topics selected by our peers in the integrated oil and gas industry.

We prioritised 25 topics of highest relevance to VARO stakeholders, and in relation to the impact generated by our business. These prioritised topics were then carried forward for further consultation with our internal and external stakeholders who were free to propose new topics of importance that may have been missed.

The resulting materiality matrix maps the most material topics for VARO along two axes: (1) importance of topics according to how our stakeholders assess VARO’s business in relation to their interests and (2) the significance of the economic, environmental and social impact of our business according to our internal stakeholders.

Materiality Matrix

This materiality assessment has led us to synthesis and categorise material topics as follows:

The topics of highest material importance are those located in the top threshold: Health & Safety, Sustainable energy, GHG emissions, Employee satisfaction and development, Sustainability reporting, Energy efficiency of operations, and Equity, Inclusion and Diversity. VARO’s ESG strategy mostly focuses on transforming VARO’s management and performance in these areas.

We are confident that the material topics identified through this process reflect VARO’s business operation ambition to facilitate the energy transition by advancing sustainable solutions, and represent a variety of key sustainability considerations that are relevant throughout our value chain.

As a commitment to continuously improve our ESG strategy and performance, we will keep engaging with our stakeholders through diverse approaches.

The next materiality assessment will be conducted in 2023.

Initial assessment of topics

Key internal and external stakeholder groups were consulted through surveys and direct interviews. The eight stakeholder groups consulted are:

  • Customers
  • Suppliers
  • Investors and shareholders
  • Membership organisations
  • Banks
  • NGOs
  • Local authorities and communities
  • Employees