Japan’s environment ministry launches pilot environmental reporting system

Financial institutions and companies sought for Environmental Reporting Platform

Japan’s Ministry of the Environment is seeking financial institutions and companies to participate in a pilot environmental reporting system for corporates based on questionnaires to the CDP [the former Carbon Disclosure Project] or the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI).

The Environmental Reporting Platform Development Pilot Project has been launched amid new Stewardship and Corporate Governance codes in the country. It is hoped the system will help financial institutions assess environmental information reported by private companies.

To alleviate the reporting burden for companies, the Ministry proposes that the platform will allow information reported to the CDP or GRI to suffice for some parts. Survey questions shared with the CDP will enable answers to the CDP questionnaire to be automatically transferred into the Environmental Reporting System.The draft questionnaire outlines seven material environmental issues: climate change, water, waste management, chemical substances management, soil contamination and biodiversity.

It asks questions a number of process questions around these seven material environmental issues, as well as questions based around who has the highest level of direct responsibility in the company, whether environmental issues are integrated into business strategy, and activity around emission reduction targets. It also asks whether steps are taken to tackle material environmental issues in a company’s value chain.

The ministry is seeking 100 institutions to participate in the project. The deadline for applications closed yesterday (September 30).

Access to the environmental information reported by companies is planned for November to February and the ministry will seek feedback over this period. Link