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Ensure Honest Accounting

Current accounting systems fail to value environmental and social factors in business decision-making. Investors and companies too often “externalize,” or ignore, the ecological and human impacts from their activity. As a result, companies are able to exploit finite water resources at minimal cost and emit carbon freely. We must ensure that capital markets integrate the full costs of environmental and social factors in business strategies, risk management and public disclosure. Achieving this will ensure companies are rewarded for strong sustainable performance.

Honest AccountingCurrent accounting systems fail to value environmental and social factors in business decision-making. Investors and companies too often “externalize,” or ignore, the ecological and human impacts from their activity. As a result, companies are able to exploit finite water resources at minimal cost and emit carbon freely.

Ceres is working to ensure that capital markets integrate the full costs of environmental and social factors in business strategies, risk management and public disclosure. Achieving this will ensure companies are rewarded for strong sustainable performance.

How We'll Get There:

  1. Propel all companies to use a carbon ‘shadow’ price in capital investment decision-making and to share that information with investors.
  2. Ensure all analysts, rating agencies and financial firms are factoring environmental, social and governance risks and opportunities in their research and valuations.
  3. Integrate sustainability factors, such as water availability, forest protection and human rights, into company and investment decision-making.
  4. Embed sustainability factors into the disclosure requirements of key capital market drivers such as the Securities and Exchange Commission, New York Stock Exchange and Financial Accounting Standards Board.


Resources

Questions and Answers for Investors on Climate Risk
Dec 01, 2004
December 2004 - A basic guide to climate change, the risks it presents to investors, and what investors can do about it.
Climate Change Risks and the SEC: Summary Report
Oct 01, 2004
October 2004 - Four-dozen participants from public pension funds, business, nonprofits, government, foundations, the United Nations and academia considered the risks climate change poses to companies and investors, the quality of existing climate risk disclosure, and measures the SEC could take to improve it.
Sustainability and Risk: Climate Change and Fiduciary Duty for the 21st Century Trustee
Sep 01, 2004
September 2004 - This report is designed to educate pension fund trustees about the connection between fiduciary responsibility and the risks to investments posed by global climate change. It was prepared in conjunction with a training forum held at Harvard University.
Ceres 2003 Annual Report
Jan 01, 2004
January 2004 - The 2003 Ceres Annual Report reviews our extraordinary achievements over the last year, including new reports, a pension fund "Call to Action", and dialogues and resolutions resulted in climate change commitments from companies.
2003 Institutional Investor Summit on Climate Risk Final Report
Dec 01, 2003
Major pension fund managers and institutional investors, along with representatives of leading Wall Street fund management firms, met for the first time to consider the potential risks to their portfolios posed by climate change at the Institutional Investor Summit on Climate Risk at the United Nations on November 21, 2003. This report reviews what participants discussed.