“Sustainability reporting among corporate issuers is largely still voluntary, it is far from universal, and often inconsistent and incomplete.”
– Social Investment Forum letter to SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro
Last week the 400 member Social Investment Forum called on the Securities and Exchange Commission to establish the mandatory reporting of corporate environmental, social and governance (ESG) or sustainability reporting. Citing the fact that corporate social and environmental performance can have material impact on portfolio performance, the proposal calls for sustainability performance to be reported on consistent measures and issued in an annual report along with standard financial disclosures.
The letter also pointed out that that similar regulation is being proposed by the United Nations and several individual countries. While relatively off the radar screens in mass media, this conversation is serious in nature and represents significant steps forward in regulating accountability for corporations on social measures beyond financial data.