Almost two hundred and forty companies have agreed to participate in a climate change disclosure campaign spearheaded by former NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg and Bank of England Governor Mark Carney, according to CNN. The initiative is called the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures.
The number of firms signed on to the agreement has more than doubled in the last six months, to include companies such as JP Morgan Chase, Burberry, BlackRock, and Daimler, who owns Mercedes Benz. These companies will release standardized information about climate impacts, in a similar manner to quarterly earnings reports. The reports will cover ground such as energy consumption, carbon emissions, strategies to address climate change, and risk management plans.
The addition of the new companies to the agreement was unveiled at a summit honoring the two-year anniversary of the Paris climate agreement.
According to Bloomberg, the disclosures will benefit firms by showing customers and shareholders that they are working to curtail negative impacts on the environment, and to address climate change and emissions issues.
“If the investing public likes what they are doing, they’ll get a higher valuation, their stock will go up and bonuses will be bigger,” said Bloomberg.
The news came the day after Exxon agreed to meet shareholder demands for more information on how climate change might impact its business. Competitors such as Shell, Total, and Statoil have joined Bloomberg and Carney’s disclosure agreement.
According to Carney, the move comes in response to increasing demand from investors and insurance companies for more access to information on the financial impact of climate change. He explained:
“You now have the mass of the financial sector saying, ‘We want to distinguish between those who can see the opportunities, those who can manage the risks, and companies that just don’t know the answers. It’s going to be more awkward to be in that last group.”
The move comes as the federal government pulls away from climate change action as part of Trump administration policy. In June, a decision was announced to pull out of the Paris climate accord.
According to Bloomberg:
“In some senses, I think Trump has been helpful because he’s at least brought the issue out. Those of us who think there really is a problem, and hope to convince him that there is, we’ve rallied together.”