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Can the SEC Make ESG Rules that are Sustainable?

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Jun 22, 2021

On June 22, 2021, SEC Commissioner Elad L. Roisman made a speech at the Virtual Conference of the National Investor Relations Institute entitled, “Can the SEC Make ESG Rules that are Sustainable?”.

Noting that the Commission has increased its attention on ESG matters recently, and that the Chair of the Commission has expressed his intent to propose new disclosure requirements relating to climate change and human capital, Mr. Roisman focused on three questions during his speech:  

  • What precise items of “E,” “S,” and “G” information are investors not getting that are material to making informed investment decisions?
  • If the SEC were able to identify the information investors need, how would the SEC come up with “E” and “S” disclosure requirements—now, and on an ongoing basis? What expertise does the SEC need?
  • If the SEC were to incorporate the work of external standard-setters with respect to new ESG disclosure requirements: how would the agency oversee them—in terms of governance, funding, and substantive work product—on an ongoing basis? And what kind of new infrastructure would be required inside the SEC and at the standard-setters themselves?

Re­view the speech on the SEC's web­site.

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