Nick Clegg, currently at the Rio+20 Summit where he visited part of a rainforest, said: “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.”
Stock Exchange-listed companies are to be forced to publish data on their greenhouse gas emissions form next year, deputy prime minister Nick Clegg has announced.
This will link their share prices of the 1,800 or so firms listed on the main UK stock market to the cost of emitting climate-warming gases. They will have to include the data, in a universally consistent format, in their corporate earnings reports from next April.
Two years later, the rules will be extended to include all large companies. The intention is to encourage them to improve their impact on the environment, their energy consumption, and to make public the link between profitability and greenhouse gas emissions growth.
“Using resources responsibly is in business’s own interests too. Pepsi depends on water, Unilever depends on fish stocks and agricultural land, and every firm relies on a stable fuel supply,” Clegg wrote.
“While nine out of ten chief executives say sustainability is fundamental to their success, only two out of ten record the resources they consume.”
The move was quickly applauded by the British Council of Shopping Centres. Helen Drury said that the “BCSC has long supported the aim to measure and manage carbon emissions through consistent and comparable reporting.
“However, government must now recognise the redundancy of the Carbon Reduction Commitment scheme, in particular the Performance League Table.”