On April 11th, XBRL US announced the publication of corporate sustainability data in machine-readable XBRL format for Moody’s Corporation and Etsy, Inc. Digitized reports were created using the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) XBRL Taxonomy, the publication developed by the Value Reporting Foundation (VRF) to explain how machine-readable environmental, social, and governance (ESG) disclosures are prepared.
These ESG reports were developed by the XBRL US ESG Working Group, a body comprised of representatives from the investors, investor relations, corporate governance, public companies, accounting, ESG, and XBRL communities. In response to global demand for sustainability data, digitized ESG reports with machine-readable data offer stakeholders and other parties with increased transparency by providing better decision-useful information. The objective of the working group is to explore ways to use the XBRL standard to support the automation of climate and other ESG disclosures. The working group also released a paper entitled “Supporting ESG Data with Standards”, which covers current topics related to ESG reporting and discusses how data standardization is beneficial because it provides pertinent information in a format that supports evaluation and comparison.
By fusing HTML with XBRL through a technical standard called Inline XBRL, these XBRL ESG reports are both human-readable and machine-readable. The digitalization of SASB Standards-based reporting in XBRL is one of the main components of the VRF’s mission of establishing ESG standards that simplify communication between companies and investors. In March 2022, the SEC proposed rules to enhance and standardize climate-related disclosures for investors and require public companies to report those disclosures in XBRL format. The XBRL standard data has been adopted by 80 regulators worldwide and is used by 6,000 public companies, 5,000 banks and 600 public utilities to report financial data to the SEC. Additionally, the format is used in 184 implementations.