On March 21, 2022, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission issued for public comment a rule proposal that, if adopted, would require reporting companies to provide certain climate-related information in their registration statements and annual reports filed with the SEC. Specifically, the proposed rules would require:
- A new section in annual reports and registration statements titled “Climate-Related Disclosure,” which would include climate-related governance, risk, business impacts, targets and goals and other related disclosures.
- Within that section, disclosure of the registrant’s Scope 1, Scope 2 and, if material, Scope 3 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, together with an attestation report from an independent GHG emissions expert covering the Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions disclosures.
- A new note to a registrant’s audited financial statements that provides climate-related metrics and impacts on a line-item basis.
This memorandum addresses the third point above – the proposed amendments to Regulation S-X to require a new footnote in audited financial statements – and concludes with some general takeaways and possible issues for inclusion in comment letters on the proposal. Please see the other two memoranda in this series for a discussion of the GHG emissions and attestation report disclosure requirements and the Regulation S-K governance, business, risk and targets disclosure requirements described above.