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UK to require carbon emissions reporting by London Stock Exchange companies

The U.K. will require London Stock Exchange-listed companies to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions starting in April 2013, according to the British government. The rule may be extended to all large companies in 2016.

“Counting your business costs while hiding your greenhouse gas emissions is a false economy,” said Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

“British companies need to reduce their harmful emissions for the benefit of the planet, but many back our plans because being energy efficient makes good business sense too. It saves companies money on energy bills, improves their reputation with customers and helps them manage their long-term costs too.”

The U.K. estimates the reporting requirement will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 4 million tons by 2021.

The government claims that businesses “have been demanding more regulation from government to provide greater clarity and transparency.” The compulsory approach will lead to “a single consistent standard” and provide “the first step in enabling companies to manage and reduce emissions,” while helping businesses reduce energy costs, according to a statement from the country’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).

Britain is the first country to introduce mandatory carbon accounting for large companies.

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