UK businesses can highlight their corporate sustainability credentials in a simple way thanks to new guidance released yesterday.

Published by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), the guidelines aim to offer clear and concise details on the ways firms can measure and report their impact on wildlife and natural services. This includes aspects such as clean air and water, food, timber, flood protection and welfare benefits.

It also highlights ways to report on performance in five separate areas – air quality and emissions, water, biodiversity and ecosystem services, natural materials and waste.

Environment minister Lord Taylor of Holbeach, who proposed the guidelines, said: “British firms are world leaders in understanding that improving the sustainability and resilience of their whole business is not only good for the environment but good for the bottom line too.

“This new guidance is another step towards our aim of corporate sustainability reporting becoming normal business practice by making it as simple as possible for companies to show their environmental impact.”

Companies can also benefit from advice on making savings in their business model, as well as providing the right environmental information relevant to investors who are looking to make important investment decisions.

Consultations on new guidance for corporate sustainability reporting and the regulation on reporting of greenhouse gas emissions can be downloaded here: