July 14, 2020
New publication: Comparing international sustainability reporting frameworks

The landscape for Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) reporting, also known as “sustainability reporting” or “non-financial reporting”, has evolved rapidly in recent years.

The evolution has occured in response to a wide range of demands from stakeholders. The rapid development of an EU regulatory framework for sustainable finance has further driven the need for evolution in sustainability reporting, as organisations must comply with various requirements and disclosure obligations.

Consequently, the European Commission is reviewing the Non-Financial Reporting Directive (NFRD), to address issues around data and to meet the growing demand for sustainability reporting.

In anticipation of the NFRD review and of further evolutions in sustainability reporting, Irish Funds has published a comment paper, “Comparing international sustainability reporting frameworks”.

This paper offers an overview and comparative analysis of some of the existing international reporting frameworks, including the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB), the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), the International Integrated Reporting (IR) Framework, Climate Disclosure Sustainability Board (CDSB) and Global Reporting Initiative (GRI).

The paper compares each standard in relation to:

  • Principles;
  • Scope;
  • Alignment with TCFD recommendations;
  • The pros and cons of each standard.

Given the global nature of business and finance, and given the fact that sustainability is a global issue, the development of an EU-based sustainability reporting framework will have limitations without greater international cooperation. An updated NFRD framework in the EU should not operate isolated from other international disclosure frameworks that are already in place; the ones that have pioneered best practice in this area.

Source: Irish funds