RegulationCorporate GovernanceCarbon reporting to be mandatory

Carbon reporting to be mandatory

An amendment to the Climate Change bill introduced last week will mean that all quoted companies will have to report on their carbon emissions as part of their business review.

The government has bowed down to backbench pressure and amended the Climate
Change Bill to incorporate carbon emissions in the business review.

All quoted companies will now have to include information on the amount of
emissions produced, including its fleet, on-site energy use, business travel and
on-site equipment, the
Independent
on Sunday reported.

The move will become statutory this summer.

Conservative spokesman for business enterprise and regulatory reform Alan
Duncan said: ‘the idea of carbon reporting sounds a good idea but we don’t
currently have a standard auditing process for carbon. So until such a mechanism
is established, it’s impossible to expect businesses to comply particularly
smaller businesses that are already overwhelmed by heaps of red tape.’

Backbenchers and other organisations such as Christian Aid believe that
current environmental reporting requirements are too weak in order to meet the
Climate Change Bill target of reductions; 26%-32% by 2020 and 60% by 2050.

Eliot Whittington, political adviser at Christian Aid, said: ‘We want
government to make environmental reporting mandatory, not voluntary’.

The CBI endorsed the mandatory reporting amendment but don’t believe that it
will be implemented until 2013.

The change will be represented in the Commons this month and is unlikely to
be dropped. A Whitehall source believes that it would be ‘highly embarrassing’
if it did not go through.

Alistair Darling, in his first budget, earlier this year announced there
could be plans to amend the Climate Change Bill by increasing the reduction to
80% by 2050.

Further reading.

Companies
will have to tell all on carbon emissions

Climate
change bill is revolutionary, says Blair

Budget
reaction: Environmental measures

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