Will the SEC Cancel Real Estate? Dissecting the Impact of the SEC's Proposed Climate Regulation

April 2022

It logically follows that the world’s largest contributor to greenhouse gasses has sensitive ears around the topic of climate change. Try using the words fossil fuels, carbon emissions, or green/sustainability in a conversation with a developer, owner-operator, or construction manager today. The odds are it elicits an emotional response on the other side of the table. Which way the energy pendulum swings for any one individual is anyone’s best guess. We’ve walked this conversational tightrope over the last six months at Shadow Ventures after interviewing 50 of our limited partners representing tens of billions in annual construction spend and real estate AUM on the topics of climate, sustainability, and ESG. The main takeaways of this exercise: the topic is volatile, nuanced, and one where no one has all of the answers. Despite the obvious nuance of the energy debate, the heuristic operating mode for real estate is strong opinions, strongly held.Let’s be clear though: whichever side of the fence you are on, your moralistic opinions of the rightness or wrongness of different forms of energy production should not distract you from the massive implications to your construction or real estate business. Which was just ratcheted up with the SEC's new climate disclosure regulation that will force publicly traded organizations to disclose both their risk and exposure to climate.The purpose of this report will aim to help you make sense of the regulation as a stakeholder in the built environment and help you plot your next best move in response.

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