Asper achieves outstanding GRESB Infrastructure Results
The yearly GRESB sustainability assessments of infrastructure portfolios have been published and we are pleased to share that the results show again a very strong performance for the Asper funds and platforms in 2021. Asper participated for the fourth time in the GRESB Assessment, as we see this benchmark as an effective tool to challenge us and the broader industry to continuously raise the bar on sustainability.
The GRESB score is an overall measure of a fund or asset ESG performance, represented as a percentage (100 percent is the maximum). At a fund level, Asper Columba scored 92% (from 86% last year) and Asper Dorothea 90% for the first time. At the asset level, our Invis Energy platform scored 89% (from 87% last year), while EVE scored 86% for the first time. North Star (Vasa Vind group Holdings) scored 96% and is included in the Participation List on GRESB website to recognize this outstanding achievement.
Engaging with GRESB to chart the path forward
As a strong supporter of GRESB, we have been engaged with their organization over the years to provide our views and feedback. In 2021, GRESB launched an 18-month stakeholder engagement process to create a shared vision for future GRESB Standards and Assessments and to develop a five-year roadmap with all GRESB Members and Partners for implementation. One element of this process was their survey, of which the results identified industry priorities and key needs from GRESB members. According to the survey conducted by GRESB, one of the key topics that emerged from members is the concern that the assessments do not always recognize actual performance accurately.
A good example of this is on greenfield vs brownfield investments, where GRESB is currently considering splitting metrics, like they also have done for the real estate assessments. Asper is supportive of this, since investing in the development and construction of a new wind park does not have any additional benefits captured in current sustainability metrics compared to investing in an existing wind park. In fact, you could even argue that greenfield investments are being penalised because of the generated emissions related to the construction phase when building these new assets. In addition, there is strong support within the GRESB community for the assessments to start covering the development phases of an asset, particularly the planning & design phases. The GRESB survey also showed the top three priorities for the Assessments going forward, which are 1) Net zero / Carbon Neutrality, 2) Circularity and resource management, and 3) Resilience. In the coming year, the GRESB assessment will slightly change again to incorporate these priorities and key needs.