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Ahead of the ISSB Standards—IFRS S1 and IFRS S2—coming into effect in January 2024, the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) is providing new and updated resources to help companies apply the Standards.

This includes enhancements to the SASB Standards, and the publication of educational material to help companies apply the climate standard, IFRS S2. This work is part of ongoing work to support the implementation of the Standards. The ISSB is also focused on advancing work to develop the IFRS Sustainability Disclosure Taxonomy to enable the digital consumption of information when the ISSB Standards are applied.

Enhanced SASB Standards

At its December board meeting taking place in Frankfurt today, following public consultation and deliberations on feedback from the marketplace, the ISSB agreed on updates to the SASB Standards.

These targeted updates enhance the international applicability of the SASB Standards, which are an important source of guidance for companies applying IFRS S1.

The updates remove and replace jurisdiction-specific references and definitions without significantly altering industries, topics or metrics. The ISSB agreed to these updates following a consultation earlier this year on the methodology that has been used.

IFRS S1 requires companies to disclose material information on all sustainability-related risks and opportunities that could reasonably be expected to affect their prospects. IFRS S2 sets out the requirements for climate-related disclosures. For risks and opportunities beyond climate, IFRS S1 directs companies to sources of guidance and requires companies to refer to and consider the industry-based SASB Standards. 

The updated SASB Standards will be available next week. 

New educational material for IFRS S2

As part of efforts to support application of IFRS S1 and IFRS S2, the IFRS Foundation has today published new educational material to help companies consider ‘nature and social aspects’ of climate-related risks and opportunities when applying IFRS S2.

The material sets out three examples that help illustrate how companies might approach these aspects of their climate-related disclosures. The material has been developed to help companies apply the ISSB Standards; it does not affect any of the requirements within the Standards.

The publication follows the launch of the IFRS Sustainability knowledge hub at COP28, a core component of the IFRS Foundation’s focus on capacity building initiatives.

Digital taxonomy

The ISSB published a proposed digital taxonomy for public consultation, which ended on 26 September 2023. During this week’s board meeting the ISSB discussed the planned next steps for the taxonomy, which is intended to be published in the first half of 2024.

Looking ahead

The ISSB continues to discuss feedback on its consultation on future priorities with a view to finalising its two-year workplan in the first half of 2024. Included in these discussions is consideration of how the SASB Standards can be enhanced and built upon.

The ISSB also remains focused on supporting and driving adoption of the ISSB Standards throughout 2024. As part of this work, the ISSB continues to prioritise discussions about interoperability, including with jurisdictional and voluntary initiatives focused on stakeholders beyond investors, and will continue to coordinate its work with its sister board the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB).

The first joint technical meeting of the ISSB and IASB will take place in January 2024 when the boards will discuss the feedback received in response to the ISSB’s agenda consultation about a potential project for further integration in reporting.

The IFRS Sustainability Symposium will also take place in New York City on 22 February 2024 which provides an opportunity for stakeholders to learn more about the ISSB Standards and the ISSB’s work.

Followable tags

Applying IFRS Sustainability standards
IFRS S1 General Requirements for Disclosure of Sustainability-related Financial Information
IFRS S2 Climate-related Disclosures