KPMG Luxembourg has received the approved verifier status from the Climate Bonds Initiative, under the Climate Bond standards and Certification Scheme, which means the firm can now act as a third-party verifier that assesses whether issuer and bond meet the requirements of the Climate Bonds Standard, and can provide an assurance report to the issuer.
KPMG Luxembourg joins the list of other ‘approved verifiers’ such as Bureau Veritas, the Carbon Trust and DNV-GL. But also three of the Big Four networks appear on the list: PwC International, EY Global and KPMG International.
However according to those three network’s legal literature they do not provide client services as they are global organisations of member firms. So how can the global networks be approved verifiers when they do not provide services, let alone assurance services?
The Climate Bonds Initiative CEO Sean Kidney told International Accounting Bulletin that in fact at least one member firm of the respective networks was an approved verifier and as such could oversea the climate bond verification work of other member firms and take liability for it in exchange for a fee.
As such the firms that are approved verifiers are KPMG India, KPMG Netherlands, PwC UK.
International Accounting Bulletin understands that for EY the approved firm is EY Australia, although this is not confirmed.
Deloitte France and Luxembourg are also approved verifiers.
Kidney said the Climate Bonds Initiative would make changes to their website to better reflect this reality.
All the Big Four networks were contacted for comment none had responded at the time of publication.