NGOs Question “Limited” Ambition of EU Reporting Standards

A group of sustainability reporting experts and NGOs have welcomed the European Commission’s adoption of the European sustainability reporting standards (ESRSs), but warn that efforts to simplify the standards have led to a reduction in the granularity of disclosures. Developed and submitted by the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG), the standards “must be protected from political pressure and further developed in sector-specific standards in future”, the NGOs said, noting shortcomings in requirements for value chain disclosures and that the ‘S’ pillar is incomplete when it comes to inclusion and diversity. They nonetheless said the ESRSs provide a “common system for reporting on all ESG topics” and are suitably aligned with the International Sustainability Standards Board’s draft standards. The ESRSs will apply to all firms falling under the scope of the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD). The NGOs said: “We call for the adoption of the ESRS framework by the European Commission and endorsement by the EU Parliament and Member States. We warn against further cuts into the proposed standards, which would severely undermine its functionality and hinder EU’s efforts to create a more sustainable and just economy.” 

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