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Phasing out unreliable sustainability data

June 17, 2022

The narrative of phasing out fossil fuels is not enough. We need to phase out unreliable sustainability data to ensure we are accountable during this transition.

Cecilia Repinski CEO & Founder Green Assets Wallet

At the Stockholm+50 UN Conference, beginning of June, Green Assets Wallet stood on stage for climate innovation and the challenges we face today to finance a just and sustainable transition.

During the session of climate innovations, Cecilia Repinski, CEO & Founder of Green Assets Wallet said, “the narrative of phasing out fossil fuels is not enough. We need to phase out unreliable sustainability data to ensure we are accountable during this transition.”

The Stockholm Climate Hub reached 32 million viewers, with the UNDP Hours being watched by a total of 3,3 million.

One of the reasons why we are seeing so much ESG greenwashing is because people want to have a quick fix. They want to think that they are doing good, while in fact they are not.

Cecilia Repinski CEO & Founder Green Assets Wallet

Recently, European MEPs voted against nuclear energy and fossil gas receiving a green investment label under the EU’s taxonomy. The decisive vote whether fossil gas and nuclear power will be included in the EU’s list of green investments as “transitional” sources of energy, will however take place at the EU Parliament’s July plenary. It is assumed that they will not receive the green label.

We must phase out what we are doing. But is that enough?

The current narrative “we must phase out what we are doing” stands for many things. There is no doubt that we need to move away from harmful energy sources such as fossil fuels, but how do we account for transitions. They take time and are seldom linear. Especially important during the time of transitions is accountability. It is an imperative.

“One of the reasons why we are seeing so much ESG greenwashing is because people want to have a quick fix. They want to think that they are doing good, while in fact they are not,” explains Cecilia.

Unreliable and quality data are taken into account to highlight impact that is neither truthful nor transparent. More often than not, this is not purposefully intended, but rather there is no quantifiable data available, or the analysis has flaws, as it is based on a methodology not fully thought through.

One of the greatest risks is that we think we are financing a transition, while in fact we are not. Too much ESG data is just qualitative and cannot be used for impact conversion and hence does not link to impact in the real economy.

Sustainable investments can only lead to a transition, if based upon credible and quantifiable impact data. Accountability is a challenge as data are not harmonized. The same data fields can stand for different things and what they measure. Green Assets Wallet’s focus is to phase out unreliable sustainability data. Without comparable data sets and no uniform methodology, investors and issuers of labelled debt spend a disproportionate amount of resources on producing impact reports.

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