New European standards for corporate sustainability declarations.

On July 31st 2023, the European Commission adopted the new European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS) for use by all companies subject to the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD).

These standards cover the full range of environmental, social and governance issues, including climate change, biodiversity and human rights.

The reporting requirements will be phased in from the 2024 financial year (publication in 2025) for around 50,000 companies operating on the European market.


To find out more

European CSRD legislation (European Directive 2022/2464 published at the end of 2022) will gradually (from the 2024 financial year) require all large European and non-European companies, as well as all listed companies (with the exception of micro-enterprises), to publish information on the risks and opportunities arising from social and environmental issues, as well as on the impact of their activities on people and the environment.  

 This will enable the various stakeholders (investors, civil society organisations, consumers, etc.) to assess the sustainable development performance of companies.

 This legislation is part of the green taxonomy and European “green deal”, in line with the international challenges of climate change (Paris Agreement) and biodiversity loss (Cop 15 – Global Biodiversity Framework).

 To ensure comparable and reliable reporting, on July 31th 2023 the Commission adopted common standards that will help companies communicate and manage their sustainability performance more effectively and, as a result, gain better access to sustainable finance.

 These 12 standards or ESRS (European Sustainability Reporting Standard) cover the 3 usual themes of sustainable development or ESG with 5 environmental standards (E1 climate change, E2 pollution, E3 freshwater and marine resources, E4 biodiversity and ecosystems and E5 land use and the circular economy).

 These ESRS, which are highly aligned with international standards (such as ISSB and GRI), refer to the concept of double materiality, which requires companies to report on both their impact on people and the environment, and the way in which social and environmental issues (or dependencies) generate financial risks and opportunities for the company.

 For each theme, the company must first carry out a robust materiality assessment (impacts and dependencies) across its entire value chain, and then describe its main risks and opportunities, as well as the financial impact on the business model, taking into account its stakeholders.

It must then define an action plan laying out the measures taken to prevent, mitigate, remedy or eliminate actual or potential impacts, and put in place its key performance indicators (KPIs) for final disclosure.


What about biodiversity and ecosystems?

Biodiversity and ecosystems are closely linked to other environmental issues and must be analysed alongside these. As a reminder, the 5 main causes of biodiversity loss are land use, use of resources (including water), climate change, environmental pollution and invasive species.

As part of this biodiversity reporting, the impact and dependency analysis requires a good understanding of its value chain and, in particular, of its supply chain and the origin of its raw materials. It is then necessary to assess the extent of negative impacts of its various sites/activities on sensitive or protected local areas in order to define the relevant risks. On this basis, actions will be implemented to avoid or reduce negative impacts or dependencies, as well as actions to restore degraded ecosystems.


  • Ensuite, il y a les services de régulation, qui sont les avantages obtenus par le contrôle des phénomènes naturels. Ceux-ci sont très utiles pour diminuer certains risques naturels. Il y a par exemple l’atténuation du changement climatique par le stockage du carbone, le traitement des eaux, la pollinisation ou encore la régulation des inondations par les zones humides.


biodiversité photovoltaiques

How can Beeodiversity help you with this very important issue?


Thanks to its nature-based solutions and 10 years of expertise, Beeodiversity can support you throughout this process, particularly in the materiality assessment of your impacts, dependencies, risks and opportunities concerning the degradation of biodiversity and ecosystems, the reduction of pollution and the use of land at your production sites or in your value chain.

We can also help you draw up your action plans, define your key indicators and monitor them.

The solutions made available to our customers to meet this reporting requirement include BeeOimpact, a tool that enables you to instantly assess the biodiversity impact of your sites in accordance with the requirements of the taxonomy and other standards (e.g. GRI), as well as tools for obtaining field measurements (e.g. BeeOmonitoring, eDNA analyses, biodiversity inventories, etc.).


When do companies have to start making these declarations?


Companies will have to start producing ESRS reports according to the following timetable: 

  • Financial year 2024 (publication 2025): large companies (with more than 500 employees) subject to the Non-Financial Reporting Directive (NFRD) (i.e. large listed companies, large banks and large insurance companies, etc.), as well as unlisted companies in the EU.
  • Financial year 2025 (publication 2026): large non-NFRD companies with more than 250 employees and sales > €40 million or total assets > €20 million, including other large non-European listed companies.
  • Financial year 2026 (publication 2027): listed SMEs, including SMEs listed outside the EU. However, listed SMEs may opt out of the reporting requirements for a further two years (2028). Separate standards (ESRS lite) will be established.
  • Financial year 2028 (publication 2029): large non-European companies that generate more than €150 million a year in the EU and have either a branch in the EU with sales of more than €40 million or a subsidiary in the EU that is a large company or a listed SME. Separate standards will also be adopted.

The European Commission estimates that between 40,000 and 50,000 companies will have to provide these reports.


 Important additional information


  • If the materiality assessment (see above) reveals that certain information or themes are irrelevant (i.e. no material impacts or dependencies), there is no obligation to report them. In the extreme case where a company has no material impact, it will still have to provide the general information set out in the ESRS2 standard as well as a specific justification for the objective relating to climate change.
  • In order to limit the impact of the new legislation and standards on businesses, the Commission has adopted additional phasing-in provisions for some of the reporting requirements. These provisions (Phase in from 1 to 2 years) apply to companies with fewer than 750 employees and mainly concern the biodiversity objective and financial impacts.
  • It has also stipulated that during the first three years, in the event of difficulties, there will be no obligation to publish all the information requested (e.g. data on the supply chain, data on third countries, etc.), but on the basis of a detailed justification/explanation.

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