This week the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) responded to demand for more climate change information. Questioning whether current disclosures adequately keeps investors informed. The last time the SEC issued guidance in this area was 2010, but it’s clear that investors now require more consistent and accurate data from companies.
The SEC intends to drive better regulation to monitor, review, and guide climate change disclosures in order to provide more consistent, comparable, and reliable information for investors. Which opens questions around how much data and how regularly companies can or will update and share this data.
The move towards greater climate reporting at company level is part of a global trend – towards the end of 2020 the UK announced its plans to mandate climate data in line with standards set by the Taskforce for Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD), with regulators in New Zealand, Hong Kong, South Korea and Switzerland also setting out similar requirements. Often described as the ‘Third Wave’ of open data, this approach adopts a more purpose driven approach to data sharing and is part of a growing call for greater transparency at corporate level.
We celebrated the announcement of the LF Climate Finance Foundation in a previous article, and the latest move from the SEC clearly builds on momentum already taking place – the great news is that robust, tried, tested and free open source tool sets already exist with platforms such as CKAN to effectively facilitate these data requirements.
As leading advocates of Open Data, Link Digital welcomes the latest move by the SEC and at the same time understands that this will raise questions within organisations about how to go about the process.
Having worked at national and regional level with governments and institutions over many years, we’ve helped them to report and publish data through Climate Data Portals, Platforms and APIs – so we have the experience to guide companies on how to implement and position their climate related disclosures today. Increasing transparency today will help organisations improve their climate impact credentials with both investors and analysts.
Please get in touch if you’re interested in discussing how we can help.