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More on ISSB. The IFRS’s ISSB S1 and S2 frameworks for sustainability and climate disclosures have been gaining momentum globally as more jurisdictions move toward transposing these standards into national law. A recent memo from Ropes & Gray discusses the global push towards adoption and offers some advice for jurisdictions looking to integrate these frameworks into their own disclosure regimes. The UK, Australia, Canada, China, Japan, New Zealand, and Singapore are seeking to incorporate the ISSB standards into their national policy. Additionally, the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) – the international group of financial regulators – has endorsed the frameworks.

Ropes & Gray does point out one potential pitfall – ISSB standards are constantly evolving and nations should review changes before adopting them. The memo states:

Adoption should not be open-ended. As new ISSB standards are developed or existing standards are updated, those should go through an appropriate review and stakeholder consultation process before becoming required disclosures. For example, in April, the ISSB indicated it has identified four potential projects: biodiversity, ecosystems and ecosystem services; human capital; human rights; and integration in reporting. 

The ISSB standards are emerging as the global frontrunner for sustainability disclosure. As more countries move towards adoption, those with different disclosure frameworks risk becoming outliers. While the ISSB provides greater standardization in sustainability reporting, multinational companies should also be prepared to comply with non-conforming countries’ individual disclosure regimes.

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The Editor

Zachary Barlow is a licensed attorney. He earned his JD from the University of Mississippi and has a bachelor’s in Public Policy Leadership. He practiced law at a mid-size firm and handled a wide variety of cases. During this time he assisted in overseeing compliance of a public entity and litigated contract disputes, gaining experience both in and outside of the courtroom. Zachary currently assists the editorial team by providing research and creating content on a spectrum of ESG… View Profile