The Worldwide Monetary Reporting Requirements Basis and the International Reporting Initiative stated Thursday they’ve reached a collaboration settlement to coordinate their standard-setting and work applications between the IFRS Basis’s nascent Worldwide Sustainability Requirements Board and GRI’s International Sustainability Requirements Board.

The transfer comes after the IFRS Basis formally launched the ISSB final November in the course of the United Nations COP26 local weather change convention in Scotland (see story). On the time, the IFRS Basis, which additionally oversees the Worldwide Accounting Requirements Board, additionally introduced that the Worth Reporting Basis, which oversees the Sustainable Accounting Requirements Board and the Worldwide Built-in Requirements Board, in addition to the Local weather Disclosure Challenge’s Local weather Disclosure Requirements Board, could be consolidated into the brand new ISSB by June of this 12 months. GRI stated it could work with the brand new worldwide standard-setting board, however would keep its independence (see story).

The competing sustainability standard-setters have come below rising stress lately from international monetary regulators such because the Worldwide Group of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) to do extra to harmonize and align their typically conflicting requirements and frameworks as buyers flock to environmental, social and governance (ESG) funds. Regulators are involved that buyers might have hassle evaluating the efficiency of such funds, with accusations of “greenwashing” by firms that tout sustainability claims that don’t match the truth of their actions. Within the U.S. the Securities and Change Fee unveiled a proposed rule Monday that might require disclosures by public firms and different issuers of their climate-related dangers (see story). It references the generally accepted framework of the Taskforce on Local weather-related Monetary Disclosures (TCFD) and the Greenhouse Fuel Protocol (GGP) however wouldn’t preclude the usage of extra particular requirements from teams equivalent to GRI, the ISSB and SASB.

The settlement from the IFRS Basis and GRI goals to make sure higher compatibility and interconnectedness of investor-focused baseline sustainability data that meets the wants of the capital markets to serve the wants of a wider vary of stakeholders. The IFRS Basis and GRI stated they acknowledge the appreciable public curiosity in aligning the place doable their work applications, terminology and steering to cut back the reporting burden for firms and harmonize the sustainability reporting panorama at a global degree.

By working collectively, the IFRS Basis and GRI will present two “pillars” of worldwide sustainability reporting. The primary pillar will signify investor-focused capital market requirements of IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Requirements developed by the ISSB, and a second pillar of GRI sustainability reporting necessities set by the GSSB might be appropriate with the primary, however might be designed to fulfill multistakeholder wants.

“At COP26 we heard robust assist for consolidation within the sustainability reporting panorama,” stated IFRS Basis chair Erkki Liikanen in an announcement Thursday. “The work of the ISSB and its international baseline idea will assist ship this goal for the capital markets, while this settlement with GRI will assist guarantee capital market requirements are developed in a manner that minimizes reporting burden for these firms additionally utilizing GRI Requirements.”

The settlement comes within the type of a memorandum of understanding and is the most recent growth within the efforts to consolidate or align a number of worldwide initiatives masking sustainability reporting right into a extra cohesive method.

“The MoU between GRI and the IFRS Basis is a robust sign to capital markets and society {that a} complete reporting system, which mixes monetary and impression materiality for sustainability reporting, is feasible on a world scale,” stated GRI CEO Eelco van der Enden in an announcement. “Aligning GRI’s established and broadly adopted requirements for sustainability impacts with the investor-focused requirements being developed by the ISSB will profit each firms and buyers, in addition to a variety of stakeholders all over the world.”

The settlement is an indication of accelerating cooperation between the assorted standard-setters. “For these fascinated by contemplating impression when assessing enterprise worth, utilizing the requirements set by the ISSB and GSSB collectively will provide a whole and appropriate suite of sustainability disclosures,” stated ISSB chair Emmanuel Faber in an announcement. “This settlement will see the 2 standard-setting boards cooperate in pursuit of that goal.”

To make sure, the assorted teams can have a protracted solution to go earlier than they’ll align all of the competing units of requirements and the ISSB remains to be within the strategy of forming, and the function that might be performed by the Worth Reporting Basis and the CDSB and their requirements will not be but clear till they’re merged into the ISSB in June.

The IFRS Basis introduced consolidation with the CDSB and the Worth Reporting Basis (which homes the IIRC’s Built-in Reporting framework and SASB requirements) in the course of the COP26 convention final fall. The ISSB stated Thursday it plans to publish subsequent week proposed Local weather and Normal Sustainability-related Disclosure necessities that, as soon as finalized, will type the worldwide baseline for climate-related disclosures. The worldwide baseline idea has been welcomed by the G20 finance leaders, IOSCO and others.

“The collaboration between the GSSB and the ISSB demonstrates our shared dedication to the worldwide alignment of disclosure necessities,” stated Judy Kuszewski, chair of the GRI GSSB, in an announcement. “That is essential if we’re to allow constant reporting by firms, which will increase accountability and drives accountable enterprise practices. We stay up for aligning work applications and to creating the two-pillar company reporting system a actuality, with monetary and sustainability reporting on an equal footing.”

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