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Make it Mandatory: The Case for Mandatory Corporate Assessment & Disclosure on Nature

As businesses call for governments to adopt mandatory requirements to assess and disclose impacts and dependencies on biodiversity by 2030, new data reveals that action on nature is lagging far behind that on climate.

Everything we value and depend on in life derives from nature: a stable climate, food, security, health, economy, culture and livelihoods. But we are failing to recognize nature’s true value and to protect this most important asset.

Climate disclosure has made it to the mainstream. In 2022, climate disclosure through CDP rose by 42% – the highest rate in almost a decade – speaking to growing company awareness, ambition and action on meeting the mid-century goals of the Paris Agreement.

However, new research shows that while climate disclosure has risen up the business agenda at pace, corporate nature-related disclosure is not happening at the speed and scale that’s required to halt and reverse nature loss and limit global warming in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement. In 2022, over 18,600 disclosed climate change data. In comparison, only around 4,000 companies disclosed on water security and just over 1,000 disclosed on forests. This lack of disclosure poses a fundamental risk to businesses, financial institutions and governments.

This report, compiled by the Capitals Coalition, Business for Nature and CDP, makes the case for a strong and ambitious Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF) Target 15 which would commit governments to mandate assessment and disclosure on impacts and dependencies on biodiversity for businesses and financial institutions above a certain size across the UN CBD’s 196 member states.

Many leading businesses already recognize the multifaceted benefits and opportunities that come with investing in nature, and the risks that come from inaction, and are working towards assessing and disclosing their impacts. They are already accelerating efforts to restore ecosystems, including anticipating and avoiding asset stranding, circumventing value chain disruption and protecting vital habitats through responsible sourcing. But companies need the political certainty to invest and change their business models.

More than 330 companies called on their Heads of State and Governments to include in Target 15, mandatory requirements for all large and transnational businesses and financial institutions to assess and disclose their impacts and dependencies on biodiversity, by 2030.

Change only happens when voices unite. By speaking together, these businesses and financial institutions are sending Heads of State a clear message. They know there can be no business on a dead planet. They stand ready to transform their businesses and are calling on governments to set the rules of the game through legislation that will create fair competition for business.

By unearthing the real cost of nature and biodiversity risks for business and investors, we can transform our systems so positive actions on nature are rewarded by the regulatory, financial and economic system.

The Executive Summary can also be accessed in French, Spanish and Mandarin.

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