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Case Study: FortisAlberta

January 18, 2022

Case Study: FortisAlberta

Synopsis
5 Minute Read

MNP helped this Alberta-based electricity service provider update its risk profile and integrate ESG into its latest strategic planning cycle.

Enterprise risk analysis guides long-term strategic plans and helps utility business become more transparent and sustainable.

Overview

Board members of Alberta-based electricity service provider required input on contemporary risks and enterprise risk management principles — as well as the impacts of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) considerations on strategic planning.

maze icon The challenge

As part of its annual strategic planning process, FortisAlberta sought to update its enterprise risk management (ERM) profile to understand the strategic / operational impacts of existing and forecasted risks. 

Historic risk considerations have been based on fundamentals such as financial performance, asset management, human resources, information technology and regulatory requirements. However, essential to this annual update was the inclusion of emerging ESG influences. This was essential to help board members understand the impacts of ESG and how to integrate traditional ERM processes with related topics and risk exposures. 

light bulb icon The approach

Update risk profile

MNP’s first step was to assess principal risks FortisAlberta is currently facing and is likely to face in the natural course of business compared to risks identified in previous cycles. This assessment considered a range of emergent factors, including the COVID-19 pandemic, a rise in cyber attacks against critical infrastructure, and the growing expectation for ESG-related considerations.

We used these insights to create an updated risk profile which board members, senior leaders, and executive teams can now use to inform their strategic and scenario planning initiatives moving forward.

Identify ESG risks

ESG has emerged as a major driver for investors, regulators, and community stakeholders in recent years. It is therefore a core risk analysis and management focus which FortisAlberta would need to consider in its strategic planning.

MNP worked with FortisAlberta’s senior leadership and executive teams to identify high-priority ESG-related risks — some of which FortisAlberta could begin addressing straight away, and some which could be incorporated into longer-term strategic plans.

As with any consideration of ESG, this is an evolving process which will need to maturate with evolving stakeholder needs (e.g., regulators, customers, and shareholders). Building this understanding is a key priority for FortisAlberta.

Educate senior leaders and board members

As ESG is a relatively new area of focus for FortisAlberta, MNP invested a considerable amount of time discussing key ESG-related risks and priorities with senior leadership and executive teams. These conversations concentrated on how to recognize and remediate risks and how to build a dependable reporting structure to demonstrate ESG maturity internally and to relevant stakeholders.

This included understanding the significant processes and practices already in place and which tie directly to expectations in the ESG paradigm. Some of these considerations included employee health and safety and diversity equity and inclusion — as well as cost-effective energy reliability and accessibility.

checkmark icon The result

FortisAlberta’s board now has a clear understanding of its contemporary risk exposures and is prepared to move forward in its strategic planning efforts. The company can also demonstrate a clear linkage between ESG considerations and how these impact strategy and risk management. 

Not only will this help to satisfy regulatory and stakeholder expectations — it will also reveal opportunities to differentiate FortisAlberta as an organization that values trust, transparency, and sustainability for years to come.

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