ESG reporting in the UK
March 8, 2023
ESG reporting in the UK applies to entities that are classified as ‘large’ for reporting periods beginning on or after 1 April 2019, there has been a requirement to report on energy use and associated greenhouse gas emissions.
For accounting periods beginning on or after 6 April 2022 UK company law has mandated disclosure covering climate-related matters for certain entities.
Disclosure must include a description of:
- Governance arrangements for climate-related risk assessments and opportunities, including a description as to how an entity identifies such risks, how they assess them and their response.
- How this risk assessment links to the overall risk management process.
- The most significant risks identified and their impact on an entity.
- How able to cope with the risks identified an entity is covering different scenarios.
- Specific targets (including KPIs) used by an entity to manage identified risks and how the entity is performing against those risks.
Such disclosure is not required for all entities and has been introduced only for:
- UK companies that have more than 500 employees and are either traded, banking or insurance companies.
- UK companies listed on AIM with more than 500 employees.
- Other UK companies that have more than 500 employees and a turnover of more than £500m.
- LLPs that have more than 500 employees and a turnover of more than £500m.
In addition, in the UK, the listing rules mandated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) require premium-listed and standard-listed companies to make disclosures under the TCFD (Task Force for Climate-related Financial Disclosure) framework. Further details on this can be found at https://www.fsb-tcfd.org/publications/.
Transition Plan Taskforce
2022 also saw the launch of the Transition Plan Taskforce (TPT). The aim of this group is to standardise the disclosure framework relating to the communication of the transition plans (to net zero) of UK private companies, to ensure that consistent, detailed, robust and credible plans are in place. Further details can be found at https://transitiontaskforce.net/.
Although mandatory disclosure of ESG-related matters is currently focused on the largest entities, entities of all sizes should feel encouraged to start to bring in ESG matters into their reporting and strategic decisions. All companies will benefit from being aware of the risks that they face from ESG matters and on the impact that their activities have on a wider stakeholder group.
If you would like to talk to one of our experts about your ESG reporting obligations in the UK, please get in touch.