The Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (“TCFD”), an entity formed by the Financial Sustainability Board (“FSB”) focused on how climate change impacts the finances of global corporations, will publish its latest list of supporters on September 26, 2018. The current list of over 300 supporters, includes major financial institutions, corporations, central banks and national governments, and is available here. Corporations have been cautious in the past to sign on as supporters, but in an August 8, 2018 webinar, the TCFD stated that there is no current monetary or other commitment attendant to becoming a supporter, and no formal timeline to start disclosing against the TCFD’s disclosure principles. While it does not appear that TCFD will proactively reach out to companies between now and September 26 to increase the number of its supporters, companies and banks may wish to examine the current list of supporters to consider whether to sign on. Potential supporters should consider if the upside of officially supporting the TCFD and signaling to peers and investors that a company is considering the financial impact of climate change outweighs any actual or potential downside. With 2018 predicted to be the fourth-hottest year in record, with the previous three being the only years hotter, this form of signaling, at little current cost, may be appealing to some companies.
Our prior post on the TCFD’s final climate change disclosure framework is available here, and the framework itself is available here. Additionally, our prior post on financial institutions’ recent pilot project to help banks disclose climate-related financial risks in line with the recommendations of the TCFD is available here and our post on the TCFD’s Knowledge Hub is available here.