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SEC stays its climate rule pending judicial review

Defining Issues | April 2024

No change in SEC’s position regarding its authority; no effect on companies preparing for compliance with other rules.

On April 4, 2024 the SEC issued an Order to stay its climate rule, which was published in the Federal Register on March 28, 2024. The Order states, “the Commission is not departing from its view that the Final Rules are consistent with applicable law and within the Commission’s long-standing authority to require the disclosure of information important to investors in making investment and voting decisions.”

While the SEC's stay pauses the need for calculating the impact of certain climate-related events or conditions on the financial statements, the remaining provisions of the rule are required for other reporting regimes. Therefore, companies should continue to move forward according to plan and carry out an interoperability analysis.

Maura Hodge

KPMG US Sustainability Reporting Leader

Applicability

  • The Enhancement and Standardization of Climate-Related Disclosures for Investors: Stay Order and Final Rule
  • Registrants with Exchange Act reporting obligations pursuant to Exchange Act Section 13(a) or Section 15(d), and companies filing a Securities Act or Exchange Act registration statement

Relevant dates

  • Climate rule issued: March 6, 2024
  • Effective date published in the Federal Register: May 28, 2024
  • Stay ordered: April 4, 2024

What the order says:

The Commission makes the following key points in the Order:

  • It is not departing from its view that the climate rule is consistent with applicable law and within its long-standing authority to require the disclosure of information important to investors in making investment and voting decisions.
  • It will continue to vigorously defend the rule’s validity in court.
  • It believes the stay will facilitate the orderly judicial resolution of the challenges that have been made and allow the court of appeals to focus on deciding the merits.
  • A stay avoids potential regulatory uncertainty if registrants were to become subject to the rule while it awaits judicial review.

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