Feb 25, 2021 - Economy

SEC to push companies to disclose more about climate risks

a golden bull in the ocean

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Securities and Exchange Commission is planning to push companies to disclose more info about risks that climate change poses to their business — and signaled that tougher policies could be in the offing.

Driving the news: Allison Herren Lee, the regulator's acting chair, said Wednesday that the SEC would bolster its focus on how companies are responding to its 2010 guidance on the topic.

  • She said it's important to provide investors with "access to material information when planning for their financial future."

The big picture: It's the latest sign of increased climate focus from the SEC and other financial agencies, including the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve.

  • Earlier this month the SEC said attorney Satyam Khanna would serve in the newly created role of senior policy adviser for climate and ESG.

What we're watching: The SEC's potential move toward creating formal, mandatory disclosure rules on climate specifically, as opposed to just looser guidance.

  • Lee said ensuring compliance with the existing guidance is an immediate step "on the path to developing a more comprehensive framework that produces consistent, comparable, and reliable climate-related disclosures."

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