Changes are Happening in Corporate Sustainability Policy

One story that has hit the news around the world this week is that Royal Dutch Shell PLC, Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp lost a significant case involving climate change policy. An investor group had challenged their approach to climate change and last week, the courts agreed with the investors.

On the same day, Exxon Mobil Corp. shareholders voted to replace at least two of the company’s 12 board members with directors who are seen as better suited to fight climate change

Also, Suncor Energy Inc., announced a target to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 which is in line with the federal government’s commitment under the Paris Agreement. 

Shareholders include the world’s largest fund manager, such as Blackstone, who are forcing companies to account for, and deal with, the risks they face regarding climate change. Blackstone itself which controls large investments by pension and other funds from around the world is a major influence for ESG reporting.

ESG reporting is gaining traction everywhere as evidenced by, for example, the formation of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB), and the moves in the EU to make sustainability reporting a mandatory part of corporate reporting. The US Securities and Exchange Commission’s recent request for input on climate change disclosure also shows an interest by this major regulator in ESG reporting.

Companies cannot ignore these pressures. There is a major shift going on in attitudes towards ESG reporting and corporate responses to climate change.

Potentially Ground-breaking Canadian Standard Setting Review is Launched

For the first time in over twenty years, a comprehensive review of the governance and structure of standard setting in Canada has been launched. The major initiative has been announced and was initiated by the Auditing and Assurance Standards Oversight Council (AASOC) and the Accounting Standards Oversight Council (AcSOC).

The overriding purpose of the review, to be delivered in one year, is to ensure the Canadian standards setting process remains relevant to stakeholders and takes into consideration recent changes in the international arena. An important change internationally is the formation of the International Sustainability Standards Board ISSB by the IFRS trustees. Included in the terms of reference of the review is the potential formation of a Canadian Sustainability Standards Board (CSSB), truly a monumental change in Canadian standards setting because it would bring sustainability standards fully into the mainstream and have the potential of leading significant change to corporate reporting.

For more on these developments, check out these links:

News release:

Terms of Reference:

Read more
Striving for Faster Data Driven Decision-making

During the pandemic, companies have been finding their existing data management processes  are in need of repair. They had previously been trying to implement Machine learning and AI to speed up and optimise their decision processes. However, the need for streamlined processes has been growing as a result of disruptions like shifting supply chains and relocated workplaces.

Read more

CPA Founding Partner

Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada), one of the largest national accounting organizations in the world, has chosen to become a founding partner of ThinkTwenty20.