HM Treasury issues sustainability reporting guidance for public sector annual reports

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17 Mar, 2015

HM Treasury has issued guidance to facilitate the completion of sustainability reports in the public sector.

The guidance sets out minimum reporting requirements (expanding upon greenhouse gas emissions, waste and finite resource consumption minimum requirements), best practice guidance and principles to be applied in preparing the required information.  The guidance also covers additional voluntary guidance that is encouraged “where it is believed that this would be useful to the user of the reports”.  Such additional voluntary guidance includes reporting on economic, social and environmental impacts that are most material to the organisation and how these relate to policy, procurement and operations.

The guidance is applicable to all central government bodies that fall within the scope of the Greening Government Commitments (i.e. departments, non-ministerial departments, agencies and non-departmental public bodies) which produce annual reports and accounts in accordance with HM Treasury’s Government Financial Reporting Manual (FReM) which requires the production of a sustainability report (subject to certain exemptions).  The FReM requires that non-exempt bodies include a discrete section in their annual report covering their performance on sustainability during the year.

The guidance is not applicable to the Devolved Governments of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales and also to local government entities. 

The press release and the full guidance are available on the HM Treasury website.

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