A change in regulation can disrupt Business As Usual; however from disruption new breakthroughs can occur.
Following on from the webinar Carbon Credentials recently hosted with Gary Shanahan, several interesting trends emerged from participants responding to questions about how they thought Streamlined Energy and Carbon (SERC) reporting may impact their business.
Nearly 100 webinar attendees responded to survey questions on topics ranging from what motivated increased disclosure on energy reporting to the perceived challenges of the new SERC requirements.
There are many benefits for improving energy efficiency for business—cost savings is often a strong driver for shifting practices. Improving transparency on energy reporting is another. Companies also position themselves to gain market share by highlighting their commitment to energy efficiency.
Most of the survey respondents, over 40%, welcomed the new reporting requirements as a way to improve senior leadership awareness of the company’s progress
For company management, there is value in information visibility. Stakeholder access to information helps guide decision and improving cost-benefit analyses, allowing that energy demand reductions maximise other benefits. Board members and shareholders will likely respond positively to information on measures that will lead improved understanding of the interconnectedness between energy and other company resources. Peter Drucker’s maximum “What gets measured gets managed” is relevant here, as participants ranked measurements as a key benefit for reporting to SERC.
While the majority of webinar participants saw clear value in increased reporting they also expressed anxiety around public benchmarking. Increasingly global companies setting Science Based Targets, and stating goals which are reported by CDP, are driving an uptick in investors making decisions based on energy efficiencies.
Investor confidence is driving companies to change policies to promote a low carbon future. With the new SERC regulations, approximately 11,900 companies will share transparency and “decision-useful” disclosure (TCFD) providing increased visibility to stakeholders.
Most companies surveyed already have schedules of reporting on ESOSor a partnership under the CRC. Currently, over 1,000 companies report annual to CDP, and with the new SERC requirements, starting April 1, 2019, all UK registered quoted companies and large unquoted companies and LLPs will be required to report UK energy use and emissions, many for the first time.
Replacing CRC with this new streamlined framework, SERC will simplify reporting and make it uniform across all industries.
As the government finalizes the guidance, companies can position themselves for these enhanced reporting requirements by reviewing the content in Carbon Credentials recent blog, and speaking with the team of experts directly, to develop strategies. These new reporting guidelines provide opportunities for business to demonstrate ambition and drive forward a cleaner smarter and more energy efficient future.