Sustainability analysis and reporting specialist Ecometrica has warned that over 8,000 UK businesses face carbon reporting for the first time at the end of the current financial year under the government’s revised environmental reporting guidance. However, it suggested many are ill-prepared.
Ecometrica fears some businesses may not have made suitable provisions for the new reporting requirements - including the streamlined energy and carbon reporting regulations (SECR) - which will impact listed firms, large unquoted companies and large limited liability partnerships (LLPs).
"All large unquoted, large LLPs, and quoted companies, as defined by the Companies Act 2006, will have to comply with the new energy and carbon reporting framework," stated Gary Davis, Ecometrica CEO. "To reduce the additional burden on reporting companies, it is expected that the figures will be published in annual reports, alongside financial data."
"The UK government is extending mandatory carbon reporting requirements to more companies than the outgoing regulations, while encouraging those that aren’t required to report to disclose their sustainability data."
Similar to the outgoing mandatory greenhouse gas (MGHG) reporting requirements, publicly-quoted companies will have to report their global greenhouse emissions and an intensity ratio, as well as their total global energy use, information relating to energy efficiency action and the methodology used to calculate the data.
Large unquoted companies and LLPs will need to include the following in their annual reports: UK energy use; associated greenhouse gas emissions relating to gas, electricity and transport; intensity ratio; and information relating to energy efficiency action.
According to Davis: "It is likely that most organisations who have had to submit a return for the energy saving opportunities scheme (ESOS) will be required to report to the new scheme."
"The new regulations will present a challenge to many businesses and an opportunity for some larger global corporates, not currently reporting, to consider applying best practice. In reality, they all share a common goal: to minimise their greenhouse gas and sustainability reporting burden," he added.