The Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) requires large and/or listed companies to publish regular reports on the social and environmental risks they face, and on how their activities impact the rights of people and the environment. The aim is to enable investors, civil society organisations, consumers and other stakeholders to evaluate how sustainable these companies are.
The CSRD is part of the European Green Deal – a set of policy initiatives by the European Commission. The overarching aim is to make the European Union fit to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030, compared to 1990 levels, and climate-neutral by 2050.
The CSRD amends the Non-financial Reporting Directive (NFRD), expanding the scope of these reporting requirements to a broader set of large companies, as well as listed SMEs. The NFRD applies only to so-called “public-interest entities”, such as listed companies, banks, or insurance companies,  with more than 500 employees. As a result, the companies needing to report on non-financial issues goes from approximately 11 700 under the NFRD to approximately 50 000 companies under the CSRD.
The CSRD also modernizes and strengthens the rules about the social and environmental information that companies must report on by specifying that the information must be relevant, comparable, reliable, and accessible. Companies will have to report according to binding standards. By contrast, under the NFRD, large companies were free to choose the standard for publishing sustainability information. Under the NFRD auditing is voluntary. The CSRD makes it mandatory.
Whether a public service media (PSM) organisation will fall within the scope of the CSRD depends on its legal form. PSM organisations established under public law will not be covered. But many PSM that are established under private law will be. For instance, a PSM that is incorporated as a joint stock company will be covered even if it is entirely owned by the State.
Precisely which kind of private legal entities will be required to report varies across Member States. A list of the relevant types of companies can be found in Annex I and Annex II of the EU Accounting Directive 2013/34/EU. Of those companies, the CSRD only requires companies that fulfill any of the following criteria to report on sustainability:
Many PSM will not be covered by the CSRD because they are public entities. Still, they may choose to use the same reporting standards on a voluntary basis. Requests for sustainability information from companies you are dealing with (e.g., banks, or companies you supply) are likely to increase once the CSRD becomes applicable to them. As a result, collecting and disclosing sustainability information will likely become a common business practice in the media sector. Using CSRD standards could make it easier to report the necessary information to banks, clients, partners and other stakeholders.
Sustainability is also becoming an essential part of consumer decisions, with increasing expectation on organizations to be sustainable.  Working on sustainability is a good way to create social impact and a positive effect on a PSM’s brand value.  It also has a positive impact on reach, both in terms of general audience and young audiences, and leads to higher audience satisfaction.  At the same time, many Europeans are concerned about false sustainability claims and do not trust mere brand pledges.  PSM are facing increasing public pressure to justify their legitimacy by providing evidence of their social impact.  Therefore, sustainability reporting according to uniform standards can increase transparency and comparability, provide a basis for better, dialogue and communication with audiences and other stakeholders, improve your reputation and attract young talent.
The European Commission adopted the CSRD in late 2022. The Directive entered into force in January 2023. The rules will start applying between 2024 and 2028:
The rules introduced by the NFRD remain in force until companies must apply the new rules of the CSRD.
Companies must disclose the impact of sustainability topics on the company’s value (financial materiality), impact on the economy, the environment, and people (impact materiality), and how they are interconnected. Companies must provide qualitative and quantitative information on their:
Relevant information includes intangibles, including intellectual, human, as well as social and relationship capital. Information about the company’s value chain will also be required where appropriate. The information should be forward-looking and retrospective, qualitative and quantitative, and cover short, medium and long-term horizons.
Companies subject to the CSRD will have to report according to European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS). The draft standards are developed by the EFRAG (European Financial Reporting Advisory Group), a private association established in 2001 with under the auspices of the European Commission. Its Member organisations are European stakeholders, national organisations and civil society organisations. EFRAG provides technical advice to the European Commission in the form of fully prepared draft EU Sustainability Reporting Standards and/or draft amendments to these Standards.
The Commission should adopt the first set of cross-cutting standards and standards for all sustainability topics (i.e., environment, social and human rights, and governance) by mid-2023, based on the draft standards published in November 2022. Sector-specific standards are expected to follow by 30 June 2024.  With the carbon footprint of the video industry having surpassed that of the aviation industry,  the Commission may adopt specific standards for the (audiovisual) media sector.
Sustainability information must be included in the management report and digitalized as companies will be required to prepare their financial statements and their management report in a single electronic reporting XHTML format. 
The CSRD also requires companies to audit the sustainability information they disclose. The information will be subject to mandatory external “limited” assurance, but is expected to shift towards a more rigorous “reasonable” assurance requirement at a later stage.
Legal & Policy
 EBU Media Intelligence Service, (January 2023, Member exclusive).
 EBU Media Intelligence Service, Unpacking Social Impact, (February 2023, Member exclusive).
 Guidance may come from the Media and Audiovisual Action Plan (MAAP) Acton 6 which aims to help the audiovisual media industry become climate neutral by 2050 by facilitating the exchange of best practices. A group of organisations have agreed to work together towards the development of a unified measurement methodology of CO2 emissions, that will contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions.
 Futuresource Consulting, Sustainability in Video Entertainment: 2022 Industry Update (November 2022).
 Article 3 of the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2019/815.