Sustainable Finance

Yale Initiative on Sustainable Finance informs the SEC climate risk disclosure rule

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

In their proposed rule on climate-related risk disclosure, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) referenced the Yale Initiative on Sustainable Finance (YISF) 2020 White Paper Toward Enhanced Sustainability Disclosure: Identifying Obstacles to Broader and More Actionable ESG Reporting,  which was written with support from the Climate Works Foundation.

Based on a survey of executives from more than 100 public companies, the YISF White Paper deepens the understanding of corporate ESG reporting practices, challenges, and thinking about how best to track and scorecard corporate sustainability performance. By highlighting the shortcomings that plague the existing patchwork of sustainability metrics, and suggesting a pathway toward a more robust framework for gauging corporate sustainability performance, this White Paper seeks to make it easier for investors to identify corporate sustainability leaders and laggards. Considering the need for more clarity and guidance around ESG disclosure and formats, the YISF White Paper calls for the creation of a standardized ESG reporting framework with mandatory disclosure by all public companies. Assurance requirements and an initiative to harmonize disclosure requirements at international level are also proposed to help ensure the quality of data reported and a commitment to continuous improvement in the information available to investors. 

By establishing a mandatory reporting framework for climate-related risks, the SEC rule realizes a longstanding demand of YISF. It concurs with our findings that the proliferation of reporting framework has made ESG reporting more difficult, not simpler. This new proposed rule by the SEC would bring more consistency, as well as transparency, to the corporate sustainability world. However, by focusing on the disclosure of greenhouse gas emissions and climate-related financial risks, the SEC’s proposed rule would only mandate transparency against a narrow set of ESG issues, despite investors’ wider demands. The YISF aims to comment on the proposed rule by May 20, 2022.

Read the SEC proposed rule here.

Check out the YISF White Paper here (an updated version of the YISF White Paper is forthcoming in the Virginia Law & Business Review).

Aisha Saad: Improving Corporate Sustainability Reporting

Aisha Saad, a Fellow of the Program on Corporate Governance at Harvard Law School, joins Jhena Vigrass (YSE ’22) to discuss the current challenges of corporate sustainability reporting and investing in ESG funds. Aisha contributed to the recently released book, Values at Work: Sustainable Investing and ESG Reporting, which explores how companies and investors can respond to pressing environmental and social issues.

Measurement Tools for a Regeneration Path: Introductory Keynote by Dan Esty

Monday, November 23, 2020

Center Director Dan Esty appeared as the introductory keynote speaker to the “Measurement Tools for a Regeneration Path” panel discussion, hosted by the alliance Regeneration 20|30.  Esty spoke about the importance of business performance measurement tools in the sustainability sector, and the improvements required to better measure the long-term environmental impacts of committed companies.

Watch the panel discussion here.

To fight climate change, the U.S. must change the way it thinks about protecting the environment

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

In an op-ed with Market Watch, Center Director Dan Esty shared that to fight climate change, the U.S. must change the way it thinks about protecting the environment. We need more positive incentives to inspire fresh thinking, spur technology development and channel capital. 

Find the article here.

Understanding the Impact of Climate Change on Wildfires with Dan Esty

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Center Director Dan C. Esty joined Cheddar Reveals to discuss the science behind how climate change impacts wildfires, the economic impacts of the wildfires in California and Oregon, and policies both current and future that may help mitigate the prevalence and intensity of these fires.

Check out the interview here.

Virtual Yale Business Sustainability Summit Commemorates Earth Day

Thursday, April 23, 2020

On April 15, the Yale Business Sustainability Summit marked the 50th anniversary of Earth Day with a virtual discussion that convened CEOs and corporate sustainability thought leaders to discuss the evolving role of business in addressing society’s sustainability challenges.

Dan Esty, Hillhouse Professor of Environmental Law and Policy, and Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, Lester Crown Professor in the Practice of Management and senior associate dean for leadership studies at the Yale School of Management, hosted the event.

Click here or on the link below to read more and watch a recording of the event.

40 Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future, with Daniel Esty

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Center Director Dan Esty recently spoke with Daniel Raimi from Resources for the Future on their podcast program. They discuss A Better Planet: Forty Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future and reflect on best practices from history to develop novel ideas for the future around sustainability.

To listen to the podcast, click here or click on the link below:

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