The SEC's Misguided Climate Disclosure Rule Proposal

14 Pages Posted: 27 Oct 2022 Last revised: 9 Nov 2022

See all articles by Lawrence A. Cunningham

Lawrence A. Cunningham

Quality Shareholders Group; George Washington University

Stephen M. Bainbridge

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - School of Law

Jonathan Berk

Stanford Graduate School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Sanjai Bhagat

University of Colorado at Boulder - Department of Finance

Bernard S. Black

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law

William J. Carney

Emory University School of Law

David J. Denis

University of Pittsburgh

Diane K. Denis

University of Pittsburgh - Katz School of Business

Charles M. Elson

University of Delaware - John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance

Jesse M. Fried

Harvard Law School; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Sean J. Griffith

Fordham University School of Law; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Jonathan M. Karpoff

University of Washington - Michael G. Foster School of Business; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

F. Scott Kieff

George Washington University - Law School

Edmund W. Kitch

University of Virginia School of Law

Kate Litvak

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law

Julia D. Mahoney

University of Virginia School of Law

Paul G. Mahoney

University of Virginia School of Law

Adam C. Pritchard

University of Michigan Law School

Dale A. Oesterle

Ohio State University (OSU) - Michael E. Moritz College of Law

Roberta Romano

Yale Law School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Christina Parajon Skinner

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School

Todd J. Zywicki

George Mason University - Antonin Scalia Law School, Faculty; PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

Date Written: October 24, 2022

Abstract

The following article adapts and consolidates two comment letters submitted last spring by a group of twenty-two professors of finance and law on the SEC’s proposed climate change disclosure rules. The professors reiterate their recommendation that the SEC withdraw its proposal as legally misguided, while outlining some of the issues that the proposal will face when challenged in court.

Keywords: SEC authority, climate disclosure, ESG, institutional investors, individual investors, information economics, government policy, financial markets, government power

JEL Classification: G18, G38, H11, K20

Suggested Citation

Cunningham, Lawrence A. and Bainbridge, Stephen Mark and Berk, Jonathan B. and Bhagat, Sanjai and Black, Bernard S. and Carney, William J. and Denis, David J. and Denis, Diane K. and Elson, Charles M. and Fried, Jesse M. and Griffith, Sean J. and Karpoff, Jonathan M. and Kieff, F. Scott and Kitch, Edmund W. and Litvak, Kate and Mahoney, Julia D. and Mahoney, Paul G. and Pritchard, Adam C. and Oesterle, Dale A. and Romano, Roberta and Skinner, Christina Parajon and Zywicki, Todd J., The SEC's Misguided Climate Disclosure Rule Proposal (October 24, 2022). GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 61, 2022, GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 61, 2022, Virginia Law and Economics Research Paper No. 2022-27, 41 Banking & Financial Services Policy Report 1, 2022, Northwestern Law & Econ Research Paper No. 22-17, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4256724

Lawrence A. Cunningham (Contact Author)

Quality Shareholders Group ( email )

New York City
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://qualityshareholdersgroup.com/

George Washington University ( email )

DC: 2000 H Street, NW
NY: 250 Vesey Street
United States
202-994-0732 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.gwu.edu/c-leaf-initiatives

Stephen Mark Bainbridge

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - School of Law ( email )

385 Charles E. Young Dr. East
Room 1242
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1476
United States
310-206-1599 (Phone)
310-825-6023 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.professorbainbridge.com

Jonathan B. Berk

Stanford Graduate School of Business ( email )

655 Knight Way
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Sanjai Bhagat

University of Colorado at Boulder - Department of Finance ( email )

Campus Box 419
Boulder, CO 80309
United States
303-492-7821 (Phone)

Bernard S. Black

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law ( email )

375 E. Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
United States
312-503-2784 (Phone)

William J. Carney

Emory University School of Law ( email )

1221 Fairview Road, N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30322
United States
404-373-7198 (Phone)
n/a (Fax)

David J. Denis

University of Pittsburgh ( email )

Katz Graduate School of Business
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
United States
412-648-1708 (Phone)

Diane K. Denis

University of Pittsburgh - Katz School of Business ( email )

368B Mervis Hall
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
United States
412-624-0296 (Phone)

Charles M. Elson

University of Delaware - John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance ( email )

Alfred Lerner Hall, Room 104
Newark, DE 19716
United States
302-831-6157 (Phone)

Jesse M. Fried

Harvard Law School ( email )

1575 Massachusetts
Griswold Hall 506
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-384-8158 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/directory/10289/Fried

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

Sean J. Griffith

Fordham University School of Law ( email )

150 West 62nd Street
New York, NY 10023
United States

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

Jonathan M. Karpoff

University of Washington - Michael G. Foster School of Business ( email )

Box 353226
Seattle, WA 98195-3200
United States
206-685-4954 (Phone)
206-221-6856 (Fax)

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

F. Scott Kieff

George Washington University - Law School ( email )

2000 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20052
United States
202-994-4644 (Phone)

Edmund W. Kitch

University of Virginia School of Law ( email )

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States
804-924-7047 (Phone)
804-924-7536 (Fax)

Kate Litvak

Northwestern University - Pritzker School of Law ( email )

375 E. Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60611
United States

Julia D. Mahoney

University of Virginia School of Law ( email )

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States
434-924-3942 (Phone)

Paul G. Mahoney

University of Virginia School of Law ( email )

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States
434-924-7121 (Phone)
434-924-7536 (Fax)

Adam C. Pritchard

University of Michigan Law School ( email )

625 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215
United States
734-647-4048 (Phone)
734-647-7349 (Fax)

Dale A. Oesterle

Ohio State University (OSU) - Michael E. Moritz College of Law ( email )

55 West 12th Avenue
Columbus, OH 43210
United States

Roberta Romano

Yale Law School ( email )

P.O. Box 208215
New Haven, CT 06520-8215
United States
203-432-4965 (Phone)
203-432-4871 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

HOME PAGE: http://www.ecgi.org

Christina Parajon Skinner

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School ( email )

3641 Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6365
United States

Todd J. Zywicki

George Mason University - Antonin Scalia Law School, Faculty ( email )

3301 Fairfax Drive
Arlington, VA 22201
United States
703-993-8091 (Phone)
703-993-8088 (Fax)

PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

2048 Analysis Drive
Suite A
Bozeman, MT 59718
United States

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