Collaboration to deliver enhanced reporting on biodiversity impacts
Published date: 07 December 2021
CDP support the update of GRI’s Biodiversity Standard
The development of a new global standard to enable organizations to increase their accountability on biodiversity impacts is progressing, paving the way for a harmonized approach to disclosure.
As part of the revision of the GRI Biodiversity Standard (GRI 304), CDP have confirmed they will participate in the process and – once the new Standard is published – use it to inform the CDP disclosure system. In addition, the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) has confirmed that the revised GRI Standard, among other standards, will input to their work on a new financial disclosure framework for nature-related risks, while GRI has accepted an invitation to join the TNFD Forum and become a TNFD Knowledge Hub partner.
Today’s news follows the announcement last week by GRI and the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group (EFRAG) that they have entered into a co-construction process to align a new EU biodiversity reporting standard with the GRI update.
The warning sirens for biodiversity are getting louder, as emphasized by widespread concerns over environmental degradation and habitat loss. That is why we have prioritized the review of GRI 304, to increase accountability by organizations on these crucial issues by delivering effective and comprehensive reporting on biodiversity impacts. It is highly significant that GRI will collaborate with both CDP and TNFD, in addition to our co-construction work with EFRAG. I’m confident that we can deliver credible and multi-stakeholder accepted disclosures – which form the basis of the GRI Standards – leading to improved transparency in support of global efforts to safeguard biodiversity.”Judy Kuszewski, Chair of the GRI Global Sustainability Standards Board (GSSB)
The Glasgow Climate Pact, forged at COP26, explicitly recognizes the importance of the integrity of all ecosystems and the protection of biodiversity in achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement. Given the urgency of the environmental crises, companies and financial institutions need to measure and disclose their impacts. Disclosure through CDP allows corporations, investors and cities to communicate their nature-related risks and the actions they are taking to reduce their impacts on biodiversity. This collaboration with GRI allows CDP to build upon our decade-long work on water and forests, helping to ensure that corporations, capital market actors and cities are equipped to support the goals of the Convention on Biological Diversity. CDP looks forward to working in partnership with GRI to enable corporate reporting across a broader spectrum of biodiversity issues through CDP’s disclosure platform.”Paul Simpson, Chief Executive Officer of CDP
In June, GRI brought together a group of funders who are supporting the review of GRI 304: Biodiversity 2016, comprising of KPMG, Ambipar, One Earth and a private donation. A multi-stakeholder Technical Committee has been appointed by the GSSB to lead the development process. Following a global consultation, the final Standard is expected by the end of 2022.
The project to review GRI 304 will incorporate the latest developments and authoritative intergovernmental instruments in the field of biodiversity, ensuring multi-stakeholder consensus and internationally agreed best practice for disclosure on how any organization manages their biodiversity impacts. GRI 304 is used annually by at least 2,000 organizations, out of the more than 10,000 companies reporting with the GRI Standards.
Research by KPMG in 2020 found less than 25% of large companies at risk from biodiversity loss disclose on the topic. A 2021 report by the Future of Sustainable Data Alliance identified an ‘ESG data hole’ that exists in corporate reporting on biodiversity.
CDP is a not-for-profit charity that runs a global disclosure system for companies, investors, cities states and regions. CDP’s three reporting questionnaires focus on climate change, forests and water security. As part of CDP’s new five-year strategy, it will expand its definition of the “E” in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG), to cover planetary boundaries, including biodiversity alongside oceans, land use, food production and waste. CDP is working to mainstream biodiversity awareness and action in business and at all levels of policymaking.
Launched in June 2021, the Taskforce for Nature-Related Financial Disclosures seeks to develop a risk management and disclosure framework for organizations to report and act on evolving nature-related risks, to support a shift in global financial flows away from nature-negative outcomes and toward nature-positive outcomes.