All companies listed on the Main Market of the Stock Exchange will have to report from April next year. This will be reviewed in 2015 with a view to extending the rules to all large companies from 2016.

The aim of the reports is to enable investors to see which companies are effectively managing hidden long-term environmental costs.

The Government believes that reporting is the first step towards companies making reductions. It estimates that it will save four million tonnes of CO2
emissions by 2021.

The UK is the first country to require companies to include emissions information for their entire organisation in their annual reports.

Mr Clegg said: “Counting your business costs while hiding your greenhouse gas emissions is a false economy.

“British companies need to r
educe their harmful emissions for the benefit of the planet, but many back our plans because being energy efficient makes good business sense too. It saves companies money on energy bills, improves their reputation with customers and helps them manage their long-term costs too.”

The Secretary of State for the Environment, Caroline Spelman, said: “The discussions we’ve had with businesses show that they want to cut down their greenhouse gas emissions, and they want to be open and transparent about it.

What they have asked for is a level playing field so that they can be fairly judged against one another, and we have delivered that.”

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