0 votes
asked ago by (57k points)
[Press release] The Securities and Exchange Commission today adopted rules to enhance and standardize climate-related disclosures by public companies and in public offerings. The final rules reflect the Commission’s efforts to respond to investors’ demand for more consistent, comparable, and reliable information about the financial effects of climate-related risks on a registrant’s operations and how it manages those risks while balancing concerns about mitigating the associated costs of the rules.

“Our federal securities laws lay out a basic bargain. Investors get to decide which risks they want to take so long as companies raising money from the public make what President Franklin Roosevelt called ‘complete and truthful disclosure,’” said SEC Chair Gary Gensler. “Over the last 90 years, the SEC has updated, from time to time, the disclosure requirements underlying that basic bargain and, when necessary, provided guidance with respect to those disclosure requirements.”

Chair Gensler added, “These final rules build on past requirements by mandating material climate risk disclosures by public companies and in public offerings. The rules will provide investors with consistent, comparable, and decision-useful information, and issuers with clear reporting requirements. Further, they will provide specificity on what companies must disclose, which will produce more useful information than what investors see today. They will also require that climate risk disclosures be included in a company’s SEC filings, such as annual reports and registration statements rather than on company websites, which will help make them more reliable.”

Specifically, the final rules will require a registrant to disclose:

-- Climate-related risks that have had or are reasonably likely to have a material impact on the registrant’s business strategy, results of operations, or financial condition;
-- The actual and potential material impacts of any identified climate-related risks on the registrant’s strategy, business model, and outlook;
-- If, as part of its strategy, a registrant has undertaken activities to mitigate or adapt to a material climate-related risk, a quantitative and qualitative description of material expenditures incurred and material impacts on financial estimates and assumptions that directly result from such mitigation or adaptation activities;
-- Specified disclosures regarding a registrant’s activities, if any, to mitigate or adapt to a material climate-related risk including the use, if any, of transition plans, scenario analysis, or internal carbon prices;
-- Any oversight by the board of directors of climate-related risks and any role by management in assessing and managing the registrant’s material climate-related risks;
-- Any processes the registrant has for identifying, assessing, and managing material climate-related risks and, if the registrant is managing those risks, whether and how any such processes are integrated into the registrant’s overall risk management system or processes;
-- Information about a registrant’s climate-related targets or goals, if any, that have materially affected or are reasonably likely to materially affect the registrant’s business, results of operations, or financial condition. Disclosures would include material expenditures and material impacts on financial estimates and assumptions as a direct result of the target or goal or actions taken to make progress toward meeting such target or goal;
-- For large accelerated filers (LAFs) and accelerated filers (AFs) that are not otherwise exempted, information about material Scope 1 emissions and/or Scope 2 emissions;
-- For those required to disclose Scope 1 and/or Scope 2 emissions, an assurance report at the limited assurance level, which, for an LAF, following an additional transition period, will be at the reasonable assurance level;
-- The capitalized costs, expenditures expensed, charges, and losses incurred as a result of severe weather events and other natural conditions, such as hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding, drought, wildfires, extreme temperatures, and sea level rise, subject to applicable one percent and de minimis disclosure thresholds, disclosed in a note to the financial statements;
-- The capitalized costs, expenditures expensed, and losses related to carbon offsets and renewable energy credits or certificates (RECs) if used as a material component of a registrant’s plans to achieve its disclosed climate-related targets or goals, disclosed in a note to the financial statements; and
-- If the estimates and assumptions a registrant uses to produce the financial statements were materially impacted by risks and uncertainties associated with severe weather events and other natural conditions or any disclosed climate-related targets or transition plans, a qualitative description of how the development of such estimates and assumptions was impacted, disclosed in a note to the financial statements.

Before adopting the final rules, the Commission considered more than 24,000 comment letters, including more than 4,500 unique letters, submitted in response to the rules’ proposing release issued in March 2022.

The adopting release is published on SEC.gov and will be published in the Federal Register. The final rules will become effective 60 days following publication of the adopting release in the Federal Register, and compliance dates for the rules will be phased in for all registrants, with the compliance date dependent on the registrant’s filer status.

Fact sheet: https://www.sec.gov/files/33-11275-fact-sheet.pdf
Rule details: https://www.sec.gov/rules/2022/03/enhancement-and-standardization-climate-related-disclosures-investors
Press release: https://www.sec.gov/news/press-release/2024-31

Please log in or register to answer this question.

...