New digital tool launched by Government to simplify SECR reporting
The Government agency and reporting council overseeing compliance for the upcoming Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) standards have launched a new taxonomy to submit relevant data in better aligned digital formats.
The Companies House government agency and the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) are both responsible for ensuring that businesses comply with the upcoming SECR reporting requirements, which are set to enter into force next month.
In partnership with the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), the two organisations have launched a new SECR taxonomy that allows energy and carbon data to be submitted by businesses when they file their digital accounts with Companies House.
The taxonomy will enable businesses to report using the XBRL global framework commonly used in business accounts. It marks the first time the format has been utilised so businesses can capture environmental data in annual reports.
Companies House’s director of digital Ross Maude said: “This is a fantastic example of cross-government working to deliver a digital service that addresses an important issue.
“Understanding the role businesses have in reducing energy and carbon emissions is central to delivering the UK’s ambition to reach net-zero by 2050. Through effective collaboration, we can make it easier for businesses to play their part.”
SECR will require around 12,000 large and UK-listed businesses to report new energy-related data when it enters into force next month.
It is a set of sustainability regulations for large businesses, focussed on publicly reporting energy use, carbon emissions, and energy efficiency measures. This effectively replaced the reporting element of the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme. The first SECR reports are due following the conclusion of the 2019/20 financial reporting year in March 2020.
Ahead of SECR, businesses have been urged by the UK Government to accelerate efforts to improve energy efficiency in order to cut corporate energy use by 20%, saving £6bn in the process,
Energy Minister Kwasi Kwarteng claimed that meeting a Clean Growth Strategy target to reduce corporate energy use by 20% by 2030 would enable the savings.
The FRC’s project director for taxonomies Jennifer Guest said: “Enabling companies to file their SECR reports digitally within their annual financial report is an important step in improving transparency of companies’ energy reporting.
“The SECR taxonomy has been carefully designed so it can be used with other accounting taxonomies making it simple and easy to use.”
The FRC is also set to launch a major review into the quality of how companies and auditors are reporting on climate change impacts and risks, including the pace at which the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) framework has been adopted.
edie has launched a business guide into the important issue of Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) as the first full financial year since the scheme was introduced in April 2019 draws to an end. Read the guide here.