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ISSB Advances Unified Sustainability Reporting with Ambitious New Agenda



At the IFRS Foundation Conference, coinciding with London Climate Action Week, Emmanuel Faber, Chair of the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB), unveiled ambitious plans to harmonise sustainability reporting. This announcement marks the launch of the ISSB’s new two-year work plan and the publication of the Feedback Statement on this plan, setting the stage for significant advancements in global sustainability disclosure.

 

The ISSB was established to address the growing proliferation of voluntary sustainability initiatives, aiming to provide investors with high-quality, comparable information about sustainability-related risks and opportunities, while enabling companies to report this information efficiently. From its inception, the ISSB has worked to simplify the fragmented landscape of sustainability reporting, building on the expertise and practices of leading standards.

 

Global Collaboration and Adoption

 

The ISSB collaborates closely with international securities regulators through the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) and engages with various jurisdictions via its Jurisdictional Working Group. This collaborative approach has already seen over 20 jurisdictions, representing nearly 55% of global GDP and more than 40% of global market capitalisation, adopt or take steps towards integrating ISSB Standards into their legal or regulatory frameworks.

 

Key Initiatives for the Next Two Years

 

Harmonising Transition Plan Disclosures: The growing need for disclosures on entities' plans to transition to a lower-carbon economy, known as transition plans, is a focal point of IFRS S2. The ISSB aims to streamline and consolidate the frameworks for such disclosures, working with the Transition Plan Taskforce to integrate their materials into the IFRS Sustainability Knowledge Hub. This initiative will ensure global applicability and compatibility with IFRS S2’s focus on climate-related risks and opportunities.

 

Effective Measurement of GHG Emissions: IFRS S2 requires greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to be measured in accordance with the widely-used GHG Protocol Corporate Standard. To maintain alignment, the IFRS Foundation and GHG Protocol have signed a Memorandum of Understanding, involving the ISSB in updates to the GHG Protocol standards. This includes appointing an ISSB representative as an observer on the GHG Protocol Independent Standards Board.

 

Partnership with CDP: As the ISSB’s global climate disclosure partner, CDP supports companies in aligning with ISSB Standards. CDP’s 2024 questionnaire, opened to 75,000 organisations, is based on IFRS S2, facilitating global compliance and enhancing climate-related disclosures.

 

Interoperability with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI): In a significant collaboration, the ISSB and GRI’s Global Sustainability Standards Board (GSSB) have committed to aligning their common disclosures. This partnership aims to create a seamless, comprehensive reporting system that meets the needs of both investors and broader stakeholders.

 

Research on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services: Building on the recommendations from the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD), the ISSB will embark on research into biodiversity, ecosystems, and ecosystem services. This research will aim to address investor information needs and enhance the guidance within IFRS S2.

 

Looking Forward

 

The ISSB’s new work plan represents a critical step in harmonising and consolidating the sustainability disclosure landscape. By responding to market demand for streamlined, high-quality information on sustainability-related risks and opportunities, the ISSB is poised to make significant contributions to global sustainability efforts. As the ISSB continues to evolve and adapt to the needs of investors and companies alike, its commitment to providing clear, comparable, and reliable sustainability disclosures remains unwavering.


At Climate Action for Associations (CAFA), we empower associations to take the lead by providing guidance and vital support, including assistance with reporting. Through promoting community learning, we aid them in fulfilling their sustainability commitments effectively.



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