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SEC move to challenge climate disclosures

On September 22, the SEC posted to its website an example of a letter the agency might send to a company regarding the climate-related information it embedded — or failed to embed — in recent securities filings.  This is seen as a move by the SEC to pressure on publicly listed companies to say more about how climate change affects their business. 

The letter is not sector-specific which means it is meant for companies in a range of sectors, including those that aren't particularly carbon intensive. A focus of the letter is a perceived "disclosure gap" -  some companies include more exhaustive disclosure of climate-related risks and efforts in their voluntary sustainability reports than they do in their required filings, which are subject to more legal and regulatory scrutiny.  This can be viewed as a move to address "green washing"  but the lesson here is companies should increase attention to harmonizing their voluntary disclosures with regulatory filings.

Tags

esg, secdesclosures, greenwashing, environment

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