The Business Council of Australia welcomes the opportunity to respond to the Senate Standing Committees on Environment and Communications Inquiry into Greenwashing.
The BCA considers the existing (economy-wide) legislative arrangements for addressing misrepresentation to be appropriate for addressing ‘greenwashing’ in Australia.
Corporate Australia is making a genuine effort to provide information being sought by stakeholders, but sustainability related risks, and their impact on financial risks, are inherently complex to navigate and address.
The provision of better guidance on how entities can comply with existing laws, including greater clarity regarding key definitions and concepts, would help improve outcomes for stakeholders and entities.
Investors, financiers, customers, regulators and non-governmental organisation (NGOs) are seeking greater information about an organisation’s sustainability-related risks, business credentials, strategies or those of its products or services.
From a voluntary perspective, businesses have been responding to stakeholder demands. Analysis of public reporting by ASX200 companies up to 31 March 2022 found that “management and disclosure of climate-related risks and opportunities” continues to improve.