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ACCA has been actively involved with the unfolding debate on sustainability since 1990. This section outlines ACCA's public position on and commitment to the sustainability agenda.
Despite becoming clear that there are more fossil fuels listed on the world’s capital markets than can be burnt if dangerous climate change is to be prevented, the way in which fossil fuel reserves are accounted for and reported does not factor in the risk that some current reserves may not be combusted. In light of this ACCA, together with Carbon Tracker, explored global reporting practices on fossil fuel reserves and the nature of any information gaps.
ACCA, in partnership with Eurosif, conducted a survey of investors to determine their views and opinions on the European Commission proposed requirements for disclosure of non-financial information for all large companies in the EU.
We wanted to find out:
The collective thinking of 49 sustainability reporting experts, resulting from debates which took place in Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, South Africa, the UAE and the UK, is captured in this report. The global discussions focussed on how the international community should take forward the commitments set out in paragraph 47 of the UN’s outcome document The Future We Want, which was agreed at the Rio+20 conference in 2012. The report sets out four key questions:
ACCA were aware from their conversations over the previous 12 months that there were different interpretations and understanding of what paragraph 47 meant. They set out to capture those differing views from both a regional and stakeholder perspective.
ACCA’s sustainability team work together with KPMG and FFI to raise awareness of the role of the accountancy profession in accounting for natural capital.
The inaugural report, Is Natural Capital a Material Issue? highlights how the benefits deriving from biodiversity and ecosystems (and the risk of their loss) are rarely considered to be material by companies.
The report demonstrates that the lack of a standardised business case for considering biodiversity and ecosystem issues is a barrier impeding companies from effectively determining risk and opportunity exposures. So too is a basic lack of awareness among accounting and business communities of natural capital issues.
‘By setting out a series of recommendations on natural capital loss, materiality and disclosure, the report makes a timely and useful contribution to this process.’ Vincent Neate, head of climate change and sustainability, KPMG UK.
Last updated: 26 Nov 2013