Organisations face growing demands for clear and transparent disclosure on their long-term ESG commitments from stakeholders – government, regulators and your own customers and employees.

Stakeholders increasingly scrutinise an organisation’s ESG performance and transparency affecting project approval, brand acceptance and consumer demand. They want to understand the purpose and values of the businesses they work with or for. This has seen a rapid increase in the focus on and reporting of non-financial metrics.

Measurement and reporting of ESG-related information is maturing rapidly, as investor-centric disclosure standards are making headway (Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures, or the new Sustainability Standards Board introduced at COP26 in November 2021).


What is your ESG and climate story?

Having a well-articulated ESG and climate story is not merely a way of discharging an organisation’s regulatory obligations.

It is fast becoming recognised as a driver of value for organisations and helps to build credibility and trust. Investors increasingly factor in ESG considerations when making investment decisions so your story can assist with providing greater access to capital.

Although discussion of an organisation’s climate response and ESG activities is becoming a growing feature in many Australian annual reports, there is still a great deal of variability in the form and level of detail provided in the front of the annual report, as well as a low level of visible flow through or linkage of this information to the financial statements.

Stakeholder demand for ESG reporting continues to rapidly change.

Companies should strive to have the same quality of reporting and controls around ESG data as they do for their financial data.

The audit profession can bring the same level of rigor to assuring non-financial information as we do to the financial statement audit.


How objective assurance can help add credibility

Assurance plays an important role in building trust around the robustness of non-financial information.

ESG disclosures should be based on what is material to the stakeholders and can differ depending on where a business is in its ESG reporting journey. That means there is no one-size-fits-all approach to ESG assurance.

We are specialists at delivering high quality assurance over ESG and other non-financial information within this changing landscape.


How KPMG can help

We provide assurance over ESG and climate information – we have acute knowledge of non-financial reporting frameworks.


Education and awareness

KPMG led workshops provide an overview of ESG assurance and the current reporting landscape, including common reporting frameworks. Vitally, they highlight what you need to do to get ready for assurance.

Assurance readiness engagement

We perform an assurance readiness engagement without issuing a formal report to reveal areas requiring additional development. This is also recommended to test readiness when management is expanding assurance KPIs beyond current metrics.

Readiness assessment

We assess management's readiness for a formal assurance engagement (eg, evaluating design of systems and processes, adequacy of guidance to key personnel). This results in a private report of observations and recommendations on actions needed to address any gaps.

Assurance

We provide formal opinions over reported ESG metrics and disclosures in accordance with relevant international and national Auditing and Assurance standards (e.g. ISAE 3000, ISA 805), and issue a formal report. This is a service we can provide to financial statement audit clients and non-audit clients.


ESG Assurance services and insights

KPMG provides a range of services and thought leadership related to ESG Assurance.


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