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Finance

SEC Bogs Down on Climate Rule, Handing White House Fresh Setback

At issue is how much environmental data companies can be forced to disclose before regulators put themselves in legal jeopardy.

SEC Chair Gary Gensler

SEC Chair Gary Gensler

Photographer: Evelyn Hockstein/Reuters/Bloomberg

The Biden administration faces a fresh environmental setback after its signature climate initiative flopped in Congress, this time as a Democratic rift on the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission stalls efforts to bring corporations into the fight against global warming.

At issue is a planned SEC rule that could force public companies to disclose details such as the amount of energy they buy and how they manage risks posed by rising temperatures. The regulation is a top goal for the White House, and SEC Chair Gary Gensler had pledged to unveil a proposal by the end of last year. Now, the timeline has likely slipped to March or even later, people familiar with the matter said.