The American Institute of CPAs joined with over a dozen other accounting organizations around the world to call for a single standard for climate change reporting.

The accounting organizations wrote a joint letter to political leaders attending the Copenhagen Convention on Climate Change. The letter calls for the development of universally accepted accounting standards that would provide relevant financial reporting information on climate change. 

“As demand for disclosure about climate change and other sustainability issues increases, universal standards —  such as the ones we’re recommending now —  will reduce complexity and allow businesses and investors to make better decisions in the future,” said AICPA president and CEO Barry Melancon.

The letter calls on policy makers to develop a single set of universally accepted standards for climate change disclosure in mainstream financial reports. The letter states that an independent, stakeholder-led body with appropriate links to public authorities should be established to develop and adopt the required accounting standards.

The AICPA in 2009 joined with accounting leaders from around the world in signing The Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Project’s principles that promote “connected reporting,” that is, reporting that connects an organization’s sustainability impacts and initiatives with its financial performance.

The organizations signing the letter are the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, the Prince’s Accounting for Sustainability Project, the Climate Disclosure Standards Board , the American Institute of CPAs, the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants, Chartered Accountants Ireland, the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, CPA Australia, the Hong Kong Institute of CPAs, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland, the Japanese Institute of CPAs, and the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants.

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