Comment period extended for proposed corporate emissions rule


Comment period extended for proposed corporate emissions rule

U.S. farm organizations are concerned a Securities and Exchange Commission’s proposed emissions regulation could impact farmers.

American Farm Bureau Attorney Travis Cushman tells Brownfield. “It risks being very, very burdensome to farmers and ranchers and it risks making their data come up in ways that should not come up, and also, there are liability concerns for farmers and ranchers. Again, farmers and ranchers are not public companies and we should not be subject to these regulations.”

Cushman says this is a level of regulation agriculture has never seen before. “This rule requires the public company to know how many tons of greenhouse gases are produced associated with each unit of production so we worry this will be very, very burdensome on farmers and ranchers.”

And, AFBF’s government affairs director Andrew Walmsley says there are unanswered questions about the proposed rule. “Who do these farmers turn to to estimate their emissions? What is that requirement going to look like? It’s not spelled out. There’s issues around data privacy, confidential business practices, and location privacy.”

So far, 120 agricultural organizations are working together to oppose the Enhancement and Standardization of Climate Related Disclosures for Investors.

The original public comment period for the proposed rule was for 39 days but the SEC has now extended the comment period until June 17th.  Cushman says farm groups asked for six months but only got one extra month to prepare their comments against the rule.  “It’s certainly not enough time. That said, we do appreciate it. It will give us a little more time to talk with our people and make our comments a little bit longer, but it is certainly not as much time as we’re looking for.”