Gov. Brown prods companies to disclose emissions

Source: Anne C. Mulkern, E&E News reporter • Posted: Wednesday, June 6, 2018

A group led by California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) and others is calling on hundreds of businesses, cities, states and regions to disclose their carbon emissions and meet goals to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

Brown and other co-chairs of the Global Climate Action Summit — an event scheduled for September in San Francisco — urged the disclosures yesterday.

“Tracking and reporting carbon pollution keeps governments and businesses accountable,” Brown said in a statement. “Governments and businesses must turn their climate goals into bold climate action by honestly and fully reporting their emissions.”

The challenge set a goal for at least 300 more companies, cities, states and regions to publicly disclose their greenhouse gas emissions and reduction efforts before the Global Climate Action Summit meets. They specifically called out companies that included Inc., Facebook Inc. and Caterpillar Inc. Those companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

It’s the latest action involving CDP, formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project. Starting in 2002, it called for corporate disclosure of emissions. As of this year, more than 570 cities with a combined population of more than 600 million have disclosed their environmental data through the group. The cities include Auckland, New Zealand; Nairobi, Kenya; Oslo, Norway; Seattle; and San Francisco, said Paul Simpson, CEO of CDP.

More than 100 states and regions in 88 countries have disclosed their emissions, as well, and 6,300 corporations representing more than 55 percent of the value of the world’s stock market. Those include Walmart Inc., Apple Inc., Toyota Motor Corp. and Unilever, Simpson said.

The goal is to keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius and ideally 1.5 degrees — the aims of the Paris Agreement.

With more companies stepping up, Simpson said in a call with reporters, the group “will be able to show what great progress the U.S. is delivering” toward the Paris Agreement, despite the Trump administration’s plans to withdraw from the pact.

There’s also an aim of getting universal and standardized reporting by all governments and entities worldwide by 2030. Other event co-chairs said Brown endorses that goal.

Asked about that, the governor’s media office said in an email that “there are a number of ways that companies can [disclose] carbon, not just through CDP (although CDP is a significant/notable option …).” Brown’s office added that the governor is trying to see “more companies/governments stepping up between now and the Summit and increasing carbon disclosure.”