As new regulations introducing mandatory greenhouse-gas (GHG) reporting were laid before parliament, the environmental audit committee (EAC) urged the government to consider forcing companies to report on more of their environmental impacts
In its report on the outcomes of the Rio+20 summit last year, the committee welcomed the inclusion of GHG emissions in company reports for UK-listed firms, but suggested that the government should go further and potentially mandate sustainability reporting.
“The government should examine the scope for introducing mandatory sustainability reporting for the private sector, going beyond the emissions reporting requirement,” conclude the MPs.
They want the government to mandate firms to report in line with the requirements imposed on Whitehall in 2012. Central government departments now have to provide details of their GHG emissions, waste management performance and resource use (including water) in their annual reports.
According to the National Audit Office, most departments met the main obligations in their first reports, which covered 2011/12, although only three of the 15 met all the requirements.
The EAC urged Defra to take a lead in helping other departments to comply with their sustainability reporting commitments.