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Bliver 2021 vendepunkt for ESG-data?

Joachim Kattrup

torsdag 07. januar 2021 kl. 22:47

Esgclarity.com diskuterer i en artikel, hvorvidt ESG data får et gennembrud i 2021. En af udfordringerne er om virksomhederne bliver i stand til at leve op til nye krav og levere informationerne til investorerne. “No one knows what perfect looks like yet because there is no rulebook in sustainability. Instead, it is about taking steps forward,” siger en ekspert:  Læs uddrag:

It has long been noted that in this relatively young space, data is not up to scratch. This is due to a lack of disclosure guidance from regulators, but also impetus from asset managers to place emphasis on ESG data.

“Data and the quality of it is very important,” Curt Custard, CIO at Newton Investment Management, told ESG Clarity. “In the asset management space, we are used to robust data infrastructure and reporting, but now it just doesn’t exist for ESG.”

But in a step forward for the responsible investment industry, commentators agreed 2021 will be a year where ESG disclosure and reporting will become a major feature and should see improvements.

“ESG analysis can be relatively backward looking,” said Rebecca Craddock-Taylor, director of sustainable investment at Gresham House. “The biggest challenge is going to be how we start looking forward. Ultimately, the success of sustainability relies on us looking forward and potentially stepping outside our comfort zone. The UK Government’s Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution is an example that we cannot wait for governments to develop fully thought-through policies before we act.

“No one knows what perfect looks like yet because there is no rulebook in sustainability. Instead, it is about taking steps forward.”

However, with clarity still needed regarding certain regulations, such as the Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) as highlighted in part one, it can be extremely difficult for companies to get to grips with what is required.

“I am pretty sure all asset managers are struggling with this right now,” said Custard.

Volker Lainer, VP of product management and regulatory affairs at data management solutions provider GoldenSource, agreed: “The immediate problem for investment managers and corporates alike is that there is still lots of uncertainty around SFDR, in particular around what is considered ‘materially harmful’ and how this should be categorised. For example, there is no agreement yet on how much carbon emissions are considered harmful and how this affects a company’s ESG rating.”

Despite this, Lainer urged companies to improve their disclosure and data ahead of any confirmation of what is required.

“Even with a lack of standardisation and specifications currently in flux, investment firms need to be in a position to publish their strategy by the 10 March to be aligned operationally to implement the RTS – level 2 of SFDR – in January 2022. However, firms should by no means see this deadline as an end point. On the contrary. In fact, this initial step should be seen as a foundation that underpins a longer-term view of ESG and its role in asset management in driving investors’ risk decisions.”

He suggested firms could, as a bare minimum, capture, analyse, identify and report just enough data on a yearly basis to meet the specifications of the regulation, or alternatively go further by collecting and providing greater amounts of granular ESG data to their investors, covering different asset classes, sectors, regions, historical analysis etc.

“By doing this, fund managers put themselves in a position where they can educate and inform, with a view to increasing their investor base and fund inflows. To achieve this, though, firms will need to access multiple data sources that will provide the breadth and depth of information currently available.”

Læs mere …

 

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