Environmental reporting is an important part of environmental management. It serves the systematic collection, evaluation and communication of environmental information. The aim is to provide an overview of the state of the environment as well as environmental impacts and pressures, and to identify opportunities for improvement. But how exactly does it work and what is the legal situation? EnExpert explains!
Environmental reporting has gained in importance in recent years, as more and more companies, authorities and organizations regard environmental protection as an important task. This is not only a matter of compliance with legal requirements, but also of responsibility for the environment and society. In this context, environmental reporting offers an opportunity to make one’s own actions transparent and to gain the trust of customers, stakeholders and the public.
An important basis for environmental reporting is the collection of environmental data. Various methods can be used here, such as on-site measurements, evaluation of existing data or estimates based on models. The data should be as objective and meaningful as possible in order to enable a well-founded evaluation and analysis.
In the context of environmental reporting, the environmental data is prepared and communicated in a report. The information should be understandable and comprehensible in order to appeal to a broad target group. Reporting can take place at different levels, such as at the company level, at the level of authorities or at the national and international level.
An important part of environmental reporting is the analysis of environmental information. This involves evaluating the data in terms of environmental impact and effects and deriving options for action. Not only ecological aspects, but also economic and social aspects should be taken into account to ensure a holistic view.
Environmental reporting thus offers an opportunity to reflect on one’s own actions and to identify potential for improvement. It is important that reporting is continuous and that progress is documented. This is the only way to achieve a long-term improvement in environmental performance.
In summary, environmental reporting is an important part of environmental management. It serves to record, evaluate and communicate environmental information and offers the opportunity to make one’s own actions transparent and to gain the trust of customers, stakeholders and the public. Environmental reporting should be continuous and take a holistic view.
Many countries have legal requirements for environmental reporting that require companies and government agencies to report regularly on their environmental impacts and pressures. These requirements vary by country and jurisdiction, some examples are:
- European Union: the European Union has adopted several environmental reporting directives, such as the Environmental Information Directive, which requires member states to provide information on the environment to the public. The directive on annual reporting of emissions and consumption of energy by large companies also falls under this.
- Germany: Germany has the Environmental Information Act (UIG), which regulates access to environmental information. The Federal Environment Agency also requires companies involved in certain pollutant emissions to submit reports on their emissions and emission reduction measures.
- U.S.: The U.S. has the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which requires companies to submit annual reports on their emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants. Companies must also report on their waste management practices, chemical management, and environmental compliance.
- Japan: Japan has the Law concerning the Promotion of Business Activities with Environmental Consideration, which requires companies to submit regular reports on their environmental impacts and pollution. The reports must also include the measures the company is taking to improve its environmental performance.
These legal requirements for environmental reporting aim to encourage companies and government agencies to improve their environmental performance and create transparency to the public. Environmental reporting is thus an important tool for promoting environmental protection and sustainability.
Legal requirements for environmental reporting in Italy
In Italy, there are several legal requirements for environmental reporting for companies and public authorities. Some examples are:
- Legislative Decree No. 152/2006: this decree, also known as the Environmental Code, regulates various aspects of environmental protection and reporting in Italy. It requires companies and public authorities to report regularly on their environmental impacts and pressures.
- Law No. 221/2015: This law requires sustainability reporting from large companies operating in certain sectors. Companies must report on their environmental impact, social performance and sustainable development efforts.
- Law No. 68/2015: this law requires public administrations to report regularly on their environmental impacts and pressures. The reports must also include measures that the administration is taking to improve its environmental performance.
- Legislative Decree No. 254/2016: this decree implements the European directive on the disclosure of non-financial information. It requires companies classified as public interest to publish regular reports on their environmental impact and social performance.
These legal requirements for environmental reporting are intended to help companies and public authorities in Italy improve their environmental performance and be more transparent to the public. Environmental reporting is thus an important tool to promote environmental protection and sustainability in Italy.