Earlier this week, the government announced that large listed UK companies will have to publish greenhouse gas emission reports in the next financial year; however accountants and business groups are concerned that the regulatory burden will add further costs to companies during the current economic uncertainty.
Currently large companies must report its carbon emissions under the Climate Change Act and the European Emissions Trading scheme, however the CBI are concerned that the requirement for businesses to publish greenhouse gas emission reports will lead to duplication.
The CBI director for business environment policy, Rhian Kelly, said: “We have been calling for mandatory carbon reporting for some time.
It is an important way to help businesses save money and emissions. But to avoid unnecessary duplication, the government now needs to scrap the Carbon Reduction Commitment.”
Concerns have also been raised that accountants are unprepared to audit or advise on mandatory greenhouse gas reporting; as the reporting takes into account all forms of harmful gases released into the environment.
One expert has said: “With only nine months to go before reporting becomes mandatory, accountancy firms must urgently address how they respond to this new requirement.
“Greenhouse gas expertise, both in terms of measurement and audit, is scarce throughout the advisory sector and firms will need to ensure they have the capabilities and expertise to meet the new obligations.
"In deciding their future strategy, at the very least, firms will need a working knowledge of greenhouse gas accounting best practice, so they can advise their clients.”
The latest announcement is likely to affect about 1,800 companies in the UK.
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