New GRI standard on biodiversity

Australia is looking to introduce mandatory sustainability reporting, with an initial focus on climate-related reporting. The proposed approach sees larger entities, in the first instance, required to begin producing annual sustainability reports aligned with IFRS S1 General Requirements for Disclosure of Sustainability-related Financial Information and IFRS S2 Climate-related Disclosures.

Reporting on biodiversity may therefore not be front of mind for Australian entities. However, if part of a global organisation that reports in line with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards, entities should take note of the updated Biodiversity Standard, GRI 101: Biodiversity 2024, issued in January 2024. The new standard builds on key global developments in the biodiversity field, such as the UN Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF), the Science Based Target Network (SBTN) and the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD).

Why report on biodiversity?

Publicly disclosing an organisation’s most significant impacts on biodiversity, and how it manages them, helps users to make informed assessments and decisions regarding the organisation’s impacts and contribution to sustainable development.

Main changes in GR 101 (2024)

The main changes in GR 101 (2024) include:

  • Facilitating reporting of impacts on biodiversity across the supply chain - requires information about products and services in the supply chain that have the most significant impacts on biodiversity, as well as recommendations for disclosing information about the downstream value chain if this is available
  • Clarifying that information is only required about the most significant impacts
  • New disclosures about how the organisation determines which sites and which products and services in the supply chain have the most significant actual and potential impacts on biodiversity
  • An emphasis on providing location-specific impacts
  • New disclosures about the direct drivers of biodiversity loss: land and sea use change, exploitation of natural resources, pollution and invasive alien species
  • New disclosures about the changes to the state of biodiversity, including the type, size and conditions of ecosystems affected or potentially affected
  • New requirements on the impacts on people resulting from the organisation’s impact on biodiversity
  • New biodiversity-specific management disclosures regarding the organisation’s policies and commitment to halt and reduce biodiversity loss.

Effective date

The updated standard will be effective on 1 January 2026, but early adoption is encouraged.

More information

Please refer to updated GR 101 as well as the related Frequently Asked Questions for more information.

How BDO can help 

If your organisation is looking to embark on biodiversity reporting, or simply understand the impacts the updated standards will have on your existing reporting, our sustainability reporting experts can help.

Contact us today.