Businesses will be continuing to digest the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) report, which highlights the urgency for companies to achieve a net zero transition. In-house lawyers may also be interested in responding to two consultations by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) on data protection and a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) consultation on diversity on boards and executive committees.
On 9 August 2021, the IPCC published Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis. The report finds a high probability of global warming increasing above the Paris Agreement goal of limiting warming to a 1.5°C increase level above pre-industrial levels by 2040. The report advises that limiting warming to close to 1.5°C, or even 2°C, will be beyond reach unless there are immediate, rapid and large-scale reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.
The report increases the urgency for companies to achieve a net zero transition as well as providing a clearer picture of the increasingly extreme weather events that businesses will face. It will, therefore, inform the adaptation measures that businesses need to put in place to deal with the changing climate. The report will be a key scientific input into the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference (COP 26) in Glasgow, from 31 October to 12 November.
The UK government has also published its hydrogen strategy, which sets out how it will support the increasingly important role of hydrogen in achieving the UK’s 2050 net zero target. The strategy includes significant funding commitments consultations on a:
- Preferred hydrogen business model.
- £240 million net zero hydrogen fund.
- Low carbon hydrogen standard.
The ICO has recently launched two consultations. The first focuses on how organisations can continue to protect people’s personal data when it is transferred outside the UK. The consultation closes at 5.00 pm on 7 October. The second looks at how the ICO can shape its new data protection and employment practices guidance and products. The closing date for responses is midnight on 21 October.
The ICO has also approved the first certification scheme criteria under the UK GDPR. Certification under the UK GDPR (Article 42) is a way for an organisation to demonstrate they are complying with their data protection obligations and show accountability. Certification providers must be accredited by the ICO or the UK Accreditation Service.
Diversity on boards and executive committees
The FCA has published a consultation paper seeking views on its proposals to amend the Listing Rules and the Disclosure Guidance and Transparency Rules in relation to diversity on boards and executive committees. The amendments would apply to accounting periods starting on or after 1 January 2022. The consultation closes on 22 October.
Dates for your diary
- ICO Age Appropriate Design Code 12-month transition period ends.
- Deadline for responses to the European Commission’s preliminary report on the provisional findings in the consumer Internet of Things sector.
Deadline for responses to the European Commission’s public consultation on its Data Act initiative.
Call for evidence on the inquiry into UK accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership closes.
Government summary and evidence paper on UK product safety review due.
- FCA consultation on extending climate-related disclosure requirements to certain standard listed companies closes.
- Status of Workers Bill to receive second reading in House of Lords.
FCA consultation on proposed changes to the listing regime closes.
- HM Treasury consultation on the UK prospectus regime closes.
- FCA consultation on its proposals to change its approach to decision-making closes.
- Closing date of the menopause inquiry launched by the House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee.
- Deadline for comments on European Commission revised vertical agreements block exemption regulation and draft revised Guidelines on vertical restraints.
HM Treasury consultation on the UK’s regime for wholesale capital markets closes.
Validity of European Commission Implementing Decisions (2001/497/EC) and (2010/87/EU) incorporating standard contractual clauses for the transfer of personal data from the EEA to third countries, ends.
- Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme ends.
- Small suppliers exclusion from CIGA 2020 restrictions expire.
- Deadline for responding to government call for evidence on dispute resolution in England and Wales.
- Deadline for owners of registered Community designs the subject of deferred publication to apply for UK registration.
- Deadline to apply for “matching” UK trade marks and designs based on EU applications pending at end of Brexit transition.
- Deadline to notify renewal of international designs expiring between 30 June and 31 December 2020.
- Temporary IPO service for high-volume requests to change representative’s address for trade marks and designs extended to this date.