SEC climate rule tester: Agency should not create “burdensome reporting requirements for agricultural production.”

Senator secured the SEC chairman’s pledge to protect farmers and ranchers in September

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today again urged the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) chairman to avoid measures that would result in onerous reporting requirements for family farms and ranchers that are part of a supply chain for a public company under its recently proposed “Climate.” – Disclosure Rule”.

“As we discussed during the Senate Banking Committee hearing on September 15, I am concerned about the negative impact that the Commission’s proposed rule to “Improve and Standardize Climate-Related Disclosures for Investors” could have on agricultural producers owned by the public are covered the indirect “Scope 3″ disclosure obligations of the company”, Tester wrote in a letter to SEC Chairman Gary Gensler.

Tester continued: “I appreciate our discussions and your response that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) does not intend for publicly traded companies to be required to ask manufacturers for information estimating these emissions. However, the SEC should not take any action that could intentionally or unintentionally result in onerous reporting requirements for agricultural production when its commodities are part of a publicly traded company’s supply chain.”

The Montana producers applauded Senator Tester’s aggressive and continued actions:

“The Farmer and Rancher Members of the Montana Farm Bureau Federation appreciate Senator Tester’s efforts in helping the SEC understand our concerns about what may be a vastly overstated rule.” said Conrad Farmer and Montana Farm Bureau Federation President Cyndi Johnson. “Farmers and ranchers should not be caught up in regulations and bureaucracy intended for public companies. Senator Tester is asking the right questions of the SEC and we thank him for his leadership and continued follow-up to this well-crafted letter.”

In September, Tester urged the SEC chairman in a Senate Banking Committee hearing about concerns he had heard from agricultural producers across Montana that the agency’s “climate disclosure rule” could lead to cumbersome paperwork and bureaucracy for family farmers and ranchers. During the hearing, Tester received assurances from the chairman that the rule would not include requirements for manufacturers to report information to the SEC and that publicly traded companies can use an estimate and will not require additional information from suppliers such as family farmers and ranchers . During the hearing and in a separate conversation with Chairman Gensler, Tester emphasized the importance of the SEC addressing the comments it has received from agricultural producers and other stakeholders and ensuring that any final rule works for Montana.

In March, the SEC proposed a rule that would require public companies to provide certain climate-related financial data and insights into greenhouse gas emissions in public disclosure documents. As part of the rule, companies would be required to disclose emissions for which they are directly responsible, as well as emissions from their supply chains and products if the company claims to reduce those indirect emissions.

As the Senate’s only working farmer, Tester continues to be Montana’s leading advocate for Montana producers and fights tooth and nail to protect family farmers and ranchers from Washington DC politicians’ efforts to damage their balance sheets. Last year Senator Tester rejected a proposal to change the way taxes on inherited assets are paid, specifically removing the so-called “raised basis” that would have had a serious impact on small agricultural producers’ ability to hand over their farms . ranches and small businesses to the next generation.

You can read the tester’s full letter to Chairman Gensler HERE.