September 17, 2021

Volume XI, Number 260

Advertisement

September 17, 2021

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

September 16, 2021

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

September 15, 2021

Subscribe to Latest Legal News and Analysis

Acting SEC Chair Lee Provides Public Statement Welcoming Public Comment on Climate Change Disclosures

On March 15, Acting Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Allison Herren Lee made a public statement (Statement) requesting public input from investors, registrants and other market participants regarding climate change disclosures. In light of increased demand for company disclosure regarding climate change risks, impacts and opportunities, Acting Chair Lee has requested SEC staff to evaluate the SEC’s disclosure rules with an emphasis on promoting disclosures that are consistent, comparable and reliable.

Acting Chair Lee noted that the SEC has periodically evaluated its regulation of climate change disclosures in the past, and in 2010 the SEC issued an interpretive release that provided guidance to issuers as to how existing disclosure requirements apply to climate change matters. In her statement, she emphasized that since 2010 investor demand for information about climate change risks, impacts and opportunities has grown dramatically. Consequently, questions arise as to whether current climate change disclosures are adequately informing investors and whether greater consistency could be achieved. Acting Chair Lee also noted that in May 2020 the SEC Investor Advisory Committee approved recommendations urging the SEC to begin updating reporting requirements for issuers to include material environmental, social and governance factors. To facilitate the SEC staff’s assessment, Acting Chair Lee presented a series of questions for public comment. These questions include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • How can the SEC best regulate, monitor, review, and guide climate change disclosures in order to provide more consistent, comparable, and reliable information for investors while also providing greater clarity to registrants as to what is expected of them?

  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of establishing different climate change reporting standards for different industries, such as the financial sector, oil and gas, transportation, etc.?

  • What is the best approach for requiring climate-related disclosures?

  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of developing a single set of global standards applicable to companies around the world, including registrants under the SEC’s rules, versus multiple standard setters and standards?

The SEC has requested comments by June 13.

For more information on the SEC’s ESG focus, see Katten’s advisory, “ESG is in the (SEC) House: SEC Exams, Enforcement and Regulations are Coming.

SEC Public Statement

©2021 Katten Muchin Rosenman LLPNational Law Review, Volume XI, Number 78
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

About this Author

Mark D. Wood, corporate securities lawyer Katten Muchin Chicago Law firm
Partner

Mark D. Wood is head of Katten's Securities practice and concentrates in corporate and securities law. Mark represents public companies, issuers and investment banks in initial public offerings (IPOs) and other public offerings, private investment in public equity (PIPE) transactions, debt securities and other securities matters.

Mark also represents clients in complex corporate transactions, including tender offers, mergers, acquisitions, dispositions, going-private transactions, private equity investments, joint ventures and...

312-902-5493
Mark Reyes Securities Lawyer Katten Muchin law firm Chicago office
Partner

Mark J. Reyes concentrates his practice in corporate and securities matters, including representing issuers and investors in public offerings and private placements of equity and debt securities and advising clients in complex corporate transactions such as mergers, acquisitions, private investments in public equity (PIPEs), private equity investments and joint ventures. He also counsels public companies on securities law compliance, disclosures and corporate governance matters.

Shown below is a...

312-902-5612
Susan Light, Katten Law Firm, Finance Law Attorney, New York
Partner

Susan Light focuses her practice on financial services regulatory matters. She counsels broker-dealers, hedge funds, investment banks and financial services clients on enforcement issues involving the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), other self-regulatory organizations (SROs) and state and federal regulatory authorities. She has particular experience related to sales practice issues, financial and operational issues, anti-money laundering, crowdfunding, cybersecurity, and cryptocurrencies.

...
212-940-8599
Farzad F. Damania, Capital markets and securities lawyer, Katten Law Firm
Partner

Farzad F. Damania focuses his practice on capital markets and securities law, mergers and acquisitions, and general corporate law. He is regularly engaged on capital markets transactions, including initial public offerings, follow-on offerings, tender offers, and high yield debt transactions as well as direct investments by private equity acquirers, sellers and co-investors. He also represents public companies on corporate governance issues, securities law compliance and stock exchange regulations.

Farzad counsels US public companies and foreign...

212-940-3838
Stanley V. Polit, Katten Muchin, Financial Services lawyer, Corporate Regulatory Matters Attorney
Associate

Stanley Polit concentrates his practice in transactional, corporate and regulatory aspects of financial services matters. Stan is able to provide legal services to a wide variety of clients including proprietary trading firms, hedge funds, broker-dealers, registered investment advisers, commodity trading advisers, financial institutions and general corporate clients.

Prior to joining Katten, Stan served as a council member for a national crisis management firm, where he specialized in crisis communication and merged media strategies. He has...

312.902.5420
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement