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Environmental, social and sustainability reporting

Environmental, social and sustainability reporting has grown substantially over the last decade. On this page you can access a range of articles, publications and online resources from our collection providing quick access to information on reporting trends and developments.

Featured report

Interim report of the UK's Joint Government Regulator TCFD Taskforce
HM Treasury, November 2020

This report – and accompanying roadmap – outlines the UK’s approach to implementing the recommendations of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures. The Government intends to introduce fully mandatory climate-related financial disclosure requirements across the UK economy.

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Featured eBook

Environmental accounting, sustainability and accountability

The book closely explores how organizations can embed care for the environment as fundamental to their functioning... [and] covers traditional accounting as a measuring instrument, contemporary advances and unresolved problems, alternative perspectives and recent developments..

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Online articles

The Library provides access to leading business, finance and management journals. These journals are available to logged-in ICAEW members, ACA students and other entitled users subject to suppliers' terms of use.

A baseline for: sustainability standards

Progress is being made towards creating global environmental, social and governance (ESG) sustainability reporting standards.

Problems with sustainability reporting

Measurements used in sustainability reporting are often nonstandard, incomplete, imprecise and misleading, argues former Timberland Chief Operating Officer Kenneth P.Pucker.

Europe's biggest banks face new green asset ratio disclosure

Europe's largest banks face new rules to disclose how much their business contributes to climate change.

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The Library provides full text access to a selection of key business and reference eBooks from leading publishers. eBooks are available to logged-in ICAEW members, ACA students and other entitled users. If you are unable to access an eBook, please see our Help and support advice or contact library@icaew.com.

Six Capitals: capitalism, climate change and the accounting revolution that can save the planet

Six Capitals charts the rise of four movements: multi-capital accounting, for society, nature and profit; the push for a new type of corporation legally bound to benefit nature and society while making a profit; ecosystem accounting for nations; and legal rights for nature.

Environmental accounting, sustainability and accountability

The book closely explores how organizations can embed care for the environment as fundamental to their functioning... [and] covers traditional accounting as a measuring instrument, contemporary advances and unresolved problems, alternative perspectives and recent developments.

Environmental reporting

Covers on environmental reporting requirements in the UK, including the measurement of environmental impacts.

Terms of use: You are permitted to access, download, copy, or print out content from eBooks for your own research or study only, subject to the terms of use set by our suppliers and any restrictions imposed by individual publishers. Please see individual supplier pages for full terms of use.

Useful links


Overviews and resources on measuring, reporting and assuring sustainability, sustainable business and climate change.

Reporting on climate change
An overview of current UK reporting guidance from the ICAEW Financial Reporting Faculty. 

Reporting on climate risks and opportunities
Practical guidance for organisations considering how best to implement the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). Published in 2018 by ICAEW in association with The Carbon Trust.


Reports on development of EU sustainability reporting standards
Information published in March 2021 by the European Commission on the development of corporate sustainability reporting across the EU. Includes a proposed roadmap for the development of a comprehensive set of EU sustainability reporting standards.

Call for evidence launched on the social element of ESG investing
The UK government is seeking views on how pension scheme trustees understand social factors and how they are included in their Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) policies. The call for evidence period ran from 24 March 2021 and until 16 June 2021.

Environmental reporting guidelines
Guidance published by GOV.UK to help companies and limited liability partnerships comply with the Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) regulations which came into effect on 1 April 2019. Also designed to help organisations with voluntary reporting on a range of environmental matters, including greenhouse gas reporting and the use of key performance indicators.

Frameworks and guidance

Accounting for climate
Guidance issued by the Climate Disclosure Standards Board in December 2020, to support preparers in integrating climate-related matters into financial statements.

Developing corporate natural capital accounts
Practical guidelines for preparing a corporate natural capital account. Prepared by Eftec, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) and PwC for the Natural Capital Committee in 2015. Intended for the most part to be applied by organisations that have a natural capital 'stewardship' role. Used by Forest Enterprise England, the first organisation to publish a natural capital account for an entire landholding.

IFAC Sustainability Framework 2.0 
Framework from the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) for 'embedding sustainability into the DNA of an organisation', focusing on business strategy, operations and reporting.

IFRS standards and climate related disclosures
Article to help investors understand current International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) requirements and guidance on the application of materiality and how it relates to climate and other emerging risks. Published by the IASB in November 2019.

Non-Financial Reporting Directive Factsheet
Overview from the Financial Reporting Council of the new UK regulations implementing the EU Directive on non-financial and diversity information. Published in July 2017.

Sustainable Development Goals Disclosure (SDGD) Recommendations
A set of recommendations which attempt to establish best practice for corporate reporting on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and enable more effective and standardized reporting on climate change, social and other environmental impacts. Published in January 2020 by IFAC, ACCA, ICAS, CA ANZ, the IIRC and the World Benchmarking Alliance. 

Your guide to ESG reporting
Guidance issued by the London Stock Exchange Group giving recommendations for good practice in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) reporting based on what investors would like to see companies provide.


Accounting for Sustainability
Body aimed at developing practical guidance and tools for embedding sustainability into decision-making and reporting processes. The website provides a how to guide on connected reporting and examples of published reports.

Climate Disclosure Standards Board
International consortium of business and environmental NGOs. Offers companies a framework for reporting environmental information and natural capital in mainstream reports such as the annual report, 10-K filing or integrated report.

Corporate Reporting Dialogue
The CRD aims to strengthen cooperation, coordination and alignment between key standard setters and framework developers in the corporate reporting landscape. Its Better Alignment Project is focused on achieving improved alignment between major sustainability reporting frameworks. 

CSR Europe
Professional network connecting companies to share corporate social responsibility best practice and projects. The website offers a toolbox of ideas and advice to help organisations implement CSR.

Global Reporting Initiative (GRI)
The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a network-based organization which developed one of the most widely adopted sustainability reporting framework. The website includes access to the latest version of the GRI’s Sustainability Reporting Standards (GRI Standards).

IFRS Foundation - Sustainability Reporting 
The IFRS Foundation was established to develop a single set of globally accepted accounting standards - the IFRS standards. In September 2020 the Foundation opened a Sustainability reporting consultation to assess demand for global sustainability standards.

International Integrated Reporting Council
The IIRC is an international organisation with a mission to "create a globally accepted integrated reporting framework which brings together financial, environmental, social and governance information in a clear, concise, consistent and comparable format." In December 2013 the IIRC published its Integrated Reporting Framework, which promotes a sustainability-led form of corporate reporting.

Natural Capital Coalition
Coalition made up of over 200 organisations who are working to create a world where business conserves and enhances natural capital. Site includes the Natural Capital Protocol which offers business managers a standardised framework to identify, measure, and value impacts and dependencies on natural capital.

Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB)
A U.S. non-profit organisation that produces sustainability accounting standards for by publicly-listed corporations in the U.S.

Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD)
Task Force set up by the Financial Stability Board (FSB) which provides a framework for climate-related financial disclosures for use by companies in providing information to investors, lenders, insurers, and other stakeholders.

Taskforce on Nature-Related Financial Disclosures (TNFD)
New global initiative which aims to give financial institutions and companies a complete picture of their environmental risks. In 2023 it will deliver a framework for organisations to report and act on evolving nature-related risks.

Directories, reports and surveys

Better sustainability reporting 
KPMG web section covering the latest industry developments towards creating a single sustainability reporting framework.

Carrots & Sticks: Global trends in sustainability reporting regulation and policy
Report published in May 2016 assessing developments in sustainability reporting regulation and policy across 71 countries. Produced jointly by KPMG International, GRI, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and The Centre for Corporate Governance in Africa. An online Carrots & Sticks database provides details of reporting instruments identified as part of the research.

Corporate Register 
A free online directory of corporate responsibility reports compiled by Next Step Consulting. Over 23,000 current and historical reports are included from companies worldwide. Free registration is required.

Driving alignment in climate-related reporting
A practical guide to assist organizations in understanding and implementing the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) recommendations when using the participants’ globally applicable frameworks and standards. Report published by the Corporate Reporting Dialogue in September 2019.

Evolving climate accountability: A global review of public sector environmental reporting
Report from CIPFA on what public sector organisations around the world are doing to report their impact on the climate. Provides insights into current sustainability reporting practices and identifies areas for consideration in order for sustainability reporting to become a mainstream part of public sector external reporting. Published in July 2021.

Falling short?
A review of the 2019 environmental and climate-related disclosures of Europe's 50 largest listed companies, under the EU Non-Financial reporting Directive (NFRD). Published by the Climate Disclosures Standards Board. 

FRC climate thematic - Reporting
A report forming part of the Financial Reporting Council's 2020 thematic review of climate-related considerations. It addresses the question, 'how are companies developing their reporting on climate-related challenges?'.

IFAC Sustainability Gateway

The International Federation of Accountants maintain this gateway to discussions, resources and news on sustainability and corporate responsibility.

KPMG survey of corporate responsibility reporting 2017
A regular survey conducted by KPMG on corporate responsibility and sustainaiblity reporting. It explores the reporting of the world's largest 250 companies and also includes quantitative data on CR reporting trends, covering 4,900 companies across 45 countries.

Purpose and impact in sustainability reporting: A review of leading UK companies
A review by PwC of sustainability reporting across the FTSE 350, public interest entities and selected inbound companies. Provides tips on how companies can improve their reporting with examples of leading practice. Published in November 2019.

Articles and books in the Library collection

Selected articles and books

Heating up the debate
By All Accounts, January 2020
A discussion of recent developments in climate related disclosures, and the challenges ahead. 

Corporate carbon and climate accounting
(Springer, 2015)
Discusses management accounting approaches for analysing business benefits and costs of climate change. Covers future directions on carbon accounting and performance measurement and reporting. Also looks at links between climate accounting and business processes, product and service development, supply chain innovation, economic successes and stakeholder relations.

The integrated reporting movement: meaning, momentum, motives and materiality
(Wiley, 2015)
By analysing the integrated reports of 124 companies around the world, this book aims to provide insights on opportunities and challenges in integrated reporting.

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