What to Look for in the SEC Climate Disclosure Proposal

·4 min read

Northampton, MA --News Direct-- Workiva

By Steve Soter

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission is expected to announce its proposal to enhance climate disclosure rules, perhaps before the new year, after months of public comments from corporate leaders, nonprofit organizations, and others.

Based on those comments, statements from SEC Chair Gary Gensler and colleagues at the SEC, and what’s happening internationally, here’s what my teammates and I at Workiva will be looking for in the upcoming proposal.

What to expect

We expect to see:

3 requirements we’d be (pleasantly) surprised to see

We don’t expect to see mandates yet for:

What to watch

There are a few other nuggets we’ll be looking for in the proposal.

Don’t forget existing climate guidance

With all the speculation of new climate disclosure requirements, public companies will want to be sure they aren’t forgetting to apply existing climate guidance. Just last month, the SEC issued a “Dear Company” letter, with nine considerations on how to follow existing guidance.

Much more to come

The SEC proposal won’t be the finish line for climate disclosures.

For one thing, the public will have time to comment on the proposal before the SEC finalizes it. (Join the SEC Professionals Group’s ESG Reporting Committee if you want to talk to peers about it.) Bigger picture, international bodies that are far ahead of the United States are also revising disclosure rules. Some companies and nonprofit groups have said regulators should agree on a global standard.

That doesn’t mean organizations should stop expanding their ESG reporting. Instead, they should take steps now to strengthen ESG reporting to be more scalable, agile, and auditable.

View additional multimedia and more ESG storytelling from Workiva on 3blmedia.com

View source version on newsdirect.com: https://newsdirect.com/news/what-to-look-for-in-the-sec-climate-disclosure-proposal-230759707

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