TCFD gains momentum as climate reporting shifts from voluntary to mandatory

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Several countries will soon make it mandatory for large companies and asset managers to calculate and publicly report their climate-related risks. It’s a complex accounting challenge and many businesses aren't fully prepared.

The governments of the U.K., New Zealand, Hong Kong and Switzerland, as well as the G7 group of nations, are among those backing mandatory reporting under the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures, or TCFD, framework. The push towards compulsory TCFD reporting will put pressure on banks, businesses and asset managers that have yet to embrace such disclosure.

A big reason why many companies struggle with TCFD implementation is because it's hard to collect, collate and analyze detailed emissions-related data in all areas of their operations. Companies also need to train their employees on technical aspects of reporting under the framework. Above all, TCFD implementation must be roundly embraced and instilled — all the way from the C-suite to product and client-teams — and that takes time.

In this episode, we speak to Thora Frost, senior manager of green finance at the Carbon Trust, a London-based consulting firm that works on climate change and sustainability issues. And we interview Matthew Townsend, partner at U.K. law firm Allen & Overy.

"You have a blizzard of regulation and policy coming down the line, certainly over the next five years, and I don't see it letting up in many jurisdictions," Townsend says.

Photo credit: Getty Images

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