Alexandra Middleton

Collectively, Finland, Norway and Sweden have some of the most ambitious commitments for combatting climate change, with Finland’s goal to be carbon neutral by 2035, Norway’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 and Sweden’s goal to have zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2045 at the latest. Recent attempts on the international level to address climate change have resulted in setting up in 2015 the FSB (Financial Stability Board) Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). In 2017 TCFD introduced recommendations on voluntary, consistent climate-related financial risk disclosures for companies to provide information to investors and other stakeholders about risks and opportunities related to the transition to a lower-carbon economy. The article addresses climate change accountability by states and by companies in the Nordic Arctic countries. Climate change accountability or willingness to take responsibility is proxied by companies’ reporting in compliance with TCFD. First, I investigate institutional mechanisms of TCFD adoption in the Nordic Arctic, including Finland, Norway and Sweden. To achieve that, I study Finnish, Norwegian, and Swedish institutions that endorse or provide practical guidelines for implementing TCFD, e.g., stock market regulators. The study results provide an overview of governance structures and practical implementation of TCFD in the Nordic Arctic (Finland, Norway and Sweden). Furthermore, the study contributes to the discussion on how to balance ambitious climate change targets with sustainable economic development in the Arctic regions.

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