C10.1 Environmental Reporting


At present, any environmental reporting is voluntary. EMAS does in include a requirement for a public Environmental Statement, but EMAS itself is a voluntary standard. However it is widely believed that the reason for the relatively low uptake of EMAS in the private sector is because of the reporting requirement. Public sector organisations are more comfortable with the idea of allowing information into the public domain than private companies, who may not want their competitors to view such information.

This attitude is changing. With the growth of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) reports, more companies are realising the marketing and competitive edge that environmental and sustainability reporting can provide.

According to the WBCSD (World Business Council for Sustainable Development), members of the International Corporate Governance Network have stated that organisations should include non-financial business information in financial reports to shareholders and published guidelines on how this may be accomplished.

However, many companies are still unsure of what informationthey should include. To be effective, the report should be selective about the non-financial indicators reported on. The report must result in meaningful information to stakeholders, especially that which impacts upon financial issues.