In Part One of this series on sustainability, we introduced the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and its mission to establish reporting standards that are both financially material and industry-specific. In this episode, David Post, SASB’s Director of Research, returns to shed more light on the implementation of SASB’s standards in the boardroom: How should today’s boards and management teams use the industry standards that SASB has developed?
“What we’ve found is that…companies have different perspectives on where this information should be reported, whether…the 10K or other locations,” said Post. “What we’ve really learned is that it’s a different evaluation process for each company, and it’s really their own journey.”
Sustainability reporting plays an important role in a company’s larger ESG strategy, particularly as investors continue to apply pressure around this topic. Post outlines additional guidance on the collection and disclosure of sustainability data.
When you’re reporting financially material sustainability information, we would look for companies to talk about each one of the topics that they have identified as being material–[both] in terms of the governance at the board level…and in terms of the strategy they have to address those issues. [We would also look for companies to] talk about the process with which they would include those sustainability issues in overall risk management and the extent at which they are going to use metrics and targets to report on that information. Finally, [we] would [look to companies to] provide that information in a trailing three-year basis.