GRESB Infrastructure provides systematic assessment, objective scoring, and peer benchmarking for environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance of infrastructure companies and funds. It enables institutional investors to request standardized ESG reporting from investments and provides tools to analyze critical aspects of management, policy, implementation, and performance. GRESB Infrastructure provides companies and funds with unique comparative business intelligence. The framework is aligned with international reporting frameworks such as the GRI and PRI.
GRESB Infrastructure seeks to establish the global standard for ESG reporting and benchmarking for infrastructure investments. It provides:
- A common language for the collection of ESG information from companies and funds around the world.
- A framework for objective scoring of ESG management and performance.
- Practical tools for investment monitoring, due diligence, and comparative analysis.
GRESB Infrastructure is one Assessment with two complementary components:
- Fund Assessment
- Asset Assessment
The GRESB Infrastructure Assessment does not rate, score, or certify individual infrastructure projects. It recognizes project-focused leadership standards, such as BREEAM®, CEEQUAL®, ENVISION®, SuRe®, Infrastructure Sustainability® and others, to establish and certify project-level management and performance.
The Fund Assessment contains ten indicators focused on management and investment processes. These indicators address foundational ESG plans and policies, leadership and accountability, engagement strategies, communications processes and other factors.
The Asset Assessment is organized around eight core Aspects:
These eight Aspects include 32 indicators addressing asset-level plans and policies, on-the-ground actions and operational performance. The Asset Assessment provides the information needed to understand efforts to maximize beneficial outputs, such as energy product, mobility, or access to clean water, while minimizing social and environmental impacts.
GRESB Infrastructure has the flexibility to accommodate a wide-range of infrastructure types including:
- Energy generation
- Energy distribution
- Energy storage
- Flood control
- Water resources
- Waste management
- Toll roads
- Rolling stock
- Social infrastructure
Each of these infrastructure sub-sectors are recognized separately in the GRESB Infrastructure Assessment and defined by specific output measures and identifying characteristics.
Each entity receives an overall GRESB Score. Depending on the entity, these may include a Fund Score and/or one or more Asset Scores. The overall scoring methodology will reflect GRESB’s goal to create meaningful differentiation within peer groups. Given this goal and the absence of prior data collection, the final scoring methodology will be determined by the nature of the data submitted by the 2016 participants. Consequently, GRESB will determine details of the scoring process later in 2016 following data validation.
For more details about the scoring concept refer to the 2016 GRESB Infrastructure Reference Guide.
Information provided by funds or assets is subject to GRESB’s multi-level validation process. This process starts upon receipt of the first submission and continues until August 31, 2016. The validation process includes:
- Automated data checks for all participants
- Random sampling of evidence submitted by selected entities
- Site visits for a small fraction of entities.
GRESB Infrastructure does not require evidence; however, the voluntary provision of evidence contributes directly to higher GRESB scores. Evidence is subject to validation. This includes examining the provided URL or upload to determine whether information supports the claimed response. Validators open and inspect evidence, consider any internal reference, and use their professional judgment to determine whether the information supports the claimed response. Their decision to accept or reject evidence is final.
The validation process encourages and ensures the submission of high quality data and is an important element of GRESB’s roadmap to investment-grade data that can be used alongside financial information to inform and guide investment decisions.
Timeline & Process
The Assessment opens in the GRESB Portal on April 1, 2016. The submission deadline is July 1 (midnight, Pacific Time), 2016 , providing participants a three-month window to complete the Assessment.
GRESB validates and analyzes all participants’ Assessment submissions. This process starts upon receipt of the first submission and continues until July 31, 2016. Results will be published in October, 2016.