ESG and Sustainability Standards

Learn more about the new landscape of environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) reporting, the development of international sustainability standards and how professional accountants are uniquely positioned to enhance reliability of ESG information for decision making.

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Page last updated on 05/20/23

ESG and Sustainability Resources

ISSB publishes proposed methodology for enhancing international applicability of SASB standards

The ISSB publishes an exposure draft “Methodology for Enhancing the International Applicability of the SASB Standards and SASB Standards Taxonomy Updates.”

Comment period open until August 9, 2023.

ISSB launches consultation seeking feedback on its priorities for next 2 years

Stakeholders are asked to provide feedback on:

  • the strategic direction and balance of the ISSB’s activities
  • the criteria for assessing which sustainability-related matters to prioritise, including topics, industries and activities
  • the scope and structure of potential new research and standard-setting projects

Comment period open until Sep 1, 2023.

ISSB to issue proposed sustainability disclosure standards end Q2 2023

The International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) plans to issue its initial IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Standards, S1 (general requirements) and S2 (climate-related), end Q2 2023.

S2 will become effective January 2024. 

S1 will become effective January 2025. 

IPSASB issues exposure draft on sustainability reporting implementation guidance

The International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) seeks comments on proposed additional guidance on how two previously published Recommended Practice Guidelines can be applied now by governments and public sector entities to report on sustainability program information. This is ahead of any decision on the potential development of a sustainability reporting framework for the public sector.

Comment period is now closed. 

ISSB confirms GHG emissions disclosure requirements

In its October 2022 meeting, the ISSB voted unanimously to require company disclosures on Scope 1, Scope 2 and Scope 3 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

IESBA issued staff publication on ethics consideration in sustainability reporting

The publication highlights the relevance and applicability of the IESBA Code in preparing and presenting sustainability information. It includes guidance on addressing greenwashing concerns.

ISSB staff requests feedback on future IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Taxonomy

As part of the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB)’s plan to enable digital consumption of sustainability-related financial information prepared in accordance with IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Standards, staff is looking for feedback in the development of the IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Taxonomy.

The comment period is now closed.

The International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) published consultation paper on accounting for natural resources

The IPSASB published a consultation paper seeking feedback in relation to issuing guidance on the recognition, measurement, presentation and disclosure of natural resources.

Currently there is no International Public Sector Accounting Standard guidance on accounting for natural resources.  This is IPSASB’s first step to address this gap.

The comment period is now closed.

The International Public Sector Accounting Standards Board (IPSASB) launched global consultation on public sector sustainability reporting

The objective of the consultation is to gauge stakeholder interest for sustainability reporting guidance for the public sector.

 This Consultation Paper proposes the IPSASB:

  • Serve as the standard setter for global public sector specific sustainability guidance,
  • Develop initial guidance focused on general disclosure requirements for sustainability-related information and climate-related disclosures with release by the end of 2023.

Comment period is now closed.

Canada Introduces Mandatory Climate Disclosures for Banks, Insurance Companies Beginning 2024

The federal government budget 2022 introduced requirements for federally regulated financial institutions to report climate-related risks based on the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure framework beginning 2024.

SEC proposes climate-related disclosure requirement

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is proposing rule changes that would require registrants to disclose climate-related information including:

  • certain climate-related financial statement metrics and related disclosures in a note to its audited financial statements
  • climate-related risks and their material impacts on the registrant’s business, strategy, and outlook
  • climate-related risks and relevant risk management processes
  • greenhouse gas emissions
  • information about climate-related targets and goals, and transition plan if any

The comment period is closed.

Proposed National Instrument 51-107, Disclosure of Climate-related Matters

The Canadian Securities Administrators has proposed a new National Instrument (NI 51-107), in response to institutional investors requests with respect to climate change. Key points in the proposal include:

  • requiring an issuer to disclose certain climate-related information mainly on governance, strategy, risk management and metrics and targets
  • introducing disclosure requirements for climate-related matters in certain regulatory filings of reporting issuers (other than investment funds)
  • non-venture issuers - comply for financial years beginning on or after January 1 of the first year after the effective date of the proposed instrument (one-year transition phase)
  • venture issuers - comply on or after January 1 of the third year after the effective date of the proposed instrument (three-year transition phase)

Comment period for the proposed NI 51-107 closed on February 16, 2022. NI 51-107 is anticipated to be effective by December 31, 2022.

New Non-authoritative Guidance on Applying CSAE 3000 to Extended External Reporting Assurance Engagements (EER)

EER encapsulates many different forms of financial or non-financial reporting including ESG reporting, corporate social responsibility reporting, integrated reporting and greenhouse gas statements.

To provide support for key challenges commonly encountered on EER assurance engagements, the IAASB published its non-authoritative guidance on applying ISAE 3000 (revised) to EER assurance engagements.

The AASB supports the AASB’s EER Guidance and issued an additional document explaining the differences between ISAE and CSAE.

Key differences include:

  • There is a separate Canadian standard for direct engagements (CSAE 3001), whereas ISAE 3000 can be used for both attestation and direct engagements.
  • Canadian practitioners need to comply with the relevant ethical requirements in their jurisdiction as per CSAEs.

Additional Non-authoritative Guidance

To stay ahead of the curve, find additional non-authoritative guidance to help you navigate the new landscape of ESG standards, reporting, attestation, and how ESG information can help investors identify and understand ESG risks as part of their decision making.

ESG ReportESG ReportESG Reporting

ESG reports communicate a company’s environmental, social and governance performance. Learn more about the ESG reporting frameworks that companies are using to disclose their ESG information.

ESG AssuranceESG AssuranceESG Assurance

As a global system for sustainability-related reporting continues to gain momentum learn about how CPAs can play a key role in increasing the reliability of sustainability information through assurance services. 

ESG RatingsESG RatingsESG Ratings, Investor Analysis and Governance

Investors and analysts are looking to understand how companies manage their ESG risks. Strong oversight and accountability are crucial to the management of material ESG risks and long-term business strategy. Learn more about ESG risk rating, corporate governance ratings and how boards can exercise oversight of ESG matters by implementing an ESG oversight framework.

ESG Thought LeadershipESG Thought LeadershipESG Thought Leadership

Responding to pressure from shareholders and customers, more companies are beginning to report on social metrics and set targets for social change beyond what the law requires. Learn how professional accountants and finance experts can play a valuable role in adding rigor, accuracy and consistency to social measurement and reporting, just as they do to financial reporting.

ESG Training

Investors, employees, and consumers alike are expecting companies to provide greater transparency around their environmental, social and governance issues. Access relevant training on how CPAs can play a role in helping companies demonstrate their value to stakeholders and the broader society.

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