Press Release

Twenty AGs Push for Reliable and Transparent Climate Disclosure Rules from the US Securities and Exchange Commission

AG Bonta leads multistate coalition urging the enhancement and standardization of climate-related disclosures.


New York, NY — A mul­ti­state coali­tion led by Cal­i­for­nia Attor­ney Gen­er­al Rob Bon­ta sub­mit­ted com­ments today in response to the Secu­ri­ties and Exchange Commission’s pro­posed rule on cli­mate-relat­ed finan­cial risk dis­clo­sures. In the let­ter, the AGs state that the new require­ments are need­ed, not only for the pro­tec­tion of our state res­i­dents who invest their retire­ment sav­ings, col­lege funds, and life sav­ings, but also for the ben­e­fit of states as investors that safe­guard the pen­sions under their control.” 

The joint com­ments stress the finan­cial risks that investors face when they lack infor­ma­tion about cli­mate risk that would allow them to com­pare com­pa­nies and the risks posed by green­wash­ing to investors. The AGs also push the Com­mis­sion to strength­en the rule and ensure trans­paren­cy through sev­er­al spe­cif­ic addi­tion­al require­ments and tight­ened com­pli­ance dates. 

Cli­mate change is already cost­ing the U.S. econ­o­my hun­dreds of bil­lions of dol­lars each year, and that fig­ure is only set to grow,” said AG Bon­ta. Whether a com­pa­ny takes seri­ous­ly its finan­cial expo­sure to cli­mate change may have a seri­ous impact on the val­ue of that com­pa­ny. I urge the SEC to final­ize its pro­pos­al to require com­pa­nies across indus­tries to pro­vide accu­rate, detailed infor­ma­tion about their cli­mate change-relat­ed risks. This infor­ma­tion is crit­i­cal for investors to make smart deci­sions about where they are putting their money.”

Trans­paren­cy is cru­cial to investors and the risks that cli­mate change pos­es to a company’s infra­struc­ture and invest­ments are no dif­fer­ent from oth­er risks that com­pa­nies must dis­close,” said Bethany Davis Noll, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of the State Ener­gy & Envi­ron­men­tal Impact Cen­ter. With their his­to­ry of pro­tect­ing investors, this coali­tion of AGs is well-placed to guide and push the Com­mis­sion to final­ize a strong and finan­cial­ly ben­e­fi­cial rule.”

Back­ground — On April 11, 2022, the U.S. Secu­ri­ties and Exchange Com­mis­sion pro­posed changes to cur­rent rules on cli­mate-relat­ed dis­clo­sures for investors. These changes would require the dis­clo­sure of finan­cial and mate­r­i­al cli­mate risks, green­house gas emis­sions, and oth­er finan­cial met­rics. Pre­vi­ous­ly, on March 15, 2021, the SEC released a state­ment announc­ing plans to eval­u­ate whether its dis­clo­sure rules suf­fi­cient­ly equip investors with​“con­sis­tent, com­pa­ra­ble, and reli­able infor­ma­tion on cli­mate change.” AG Bon­ta led a coali­tion of 12 AGs in fil­ing com­ments in response to that state­ment. On June 15, 2022, West Vir­ginia led a coali­tion of 24 states in com­ments oppos­ing the pro­posed rule. 


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ABOUT THE STATE ENER­GY & ENVI­RON­MEN­TAL IMPACT CEN­TER
The State Ener­gy & Envi­ron­men­tal Impact Cen­ter at the NYU School of Law is a non-par­ti­san aca­d­e­m­ic cen­ter ded­i­cat­ed to the study and sup­port of state attor­neys gen­er­al in their work defend­ing and pro­mot­ing clean ener­gy, cli­mate and envi­ron­men­tal laws and policies.

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