Last March, the Securities and Exchange Commission proposed a rule this would require companies to further disclose climate-related risks and their greenhouse gas emissions, both direct and indirect. The more than 500-page proposal has sparked significant controversy, and several industry groups and state attorneys general have announced plans to sue if the SEC proceeds with the rule as intended.
It was widely expected that the SEC would issue a final rule this spring. Now, however, it looks like the final rule will be released in the fall, at the earliest.
Corporate legal advisor reports:
Former SEC Commissioner Robert J. Jackson Jr. said in a webinar last month that the agency wanted to take more time to craft the rule after broad public input.
“I just realized over the past few weeks that it looks like the rule is going to be pushed a bit further than many had thought, including myself. It feels more like the fall of this year,” Jackson told S&P Global Market Intelligence. as told.
That would likely mean that public companies probably wouldn’t start making climate disclosures until next year.
But even that might be optimistic.
As the story notes, the SEC also appears to be behind with controversial cybersecurity regulation. Observers suggest the Commission is taking more time to ensure that its regulatory measures will survive judicial review. Depending on the content of the ultimate rules, however, an additional delay might do little to protect the rules from legal attack.
For more on the issues surrounding SEC-mandated climate disclosure, check out this 2022 article and the related 2021 webinar.