The TranspArEEnS (Mainstreaming Transparent Assessment of Energy Efficiency in Environmental Social Governance Ratings) project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (under the Grant Agreement n° 101033869). It is supervised by the European Commission and led by Ca’ Foscari University of Venice and brings together CRIF S.p.A, the EMF-ECBC, the Leibniz Institute for Financial Research SAFE and Modefinance srl.
TranspArEEnS aims to develop a qualitative-quantitative framework for the standardised collection and analysis of EE (Energy Efficiency) and ESG (Environmental Social Governance) information of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises and intends thus to enhance standardized disclosure of EE - ESG information, to foster access to long-term financing (e.g. via securitization) and better risk assessment, while taming the risk of greenwashing.
Achieving the EU2030 climate and energy targets requires massive additional investments and Energy Efficiency investments are considered an important tool for addressing climate change mitigation and adaptation. The EE-ESG evaluation developed by TranspArEEnS will make a key contribution to enhance disclosure of firms’ alignment to EU2030 objectives, the EU Taxonomy and ESG benchmarks, focusing on EE investments. Its attention to Small and Medium-sized Entreprises (SMEs) makes it of strategic relevance considering that 99% of all European companies are SMEs and thus the potential impact is very high.
In this context, CRIF was the owner of designing a standardized qualitative framework capable of collecting, through questionnaires, the information of Italian SMEs about their EE activities and/or assets and ESG factors.
The structure of the questionnaires aims to capture the critical dimensions for alignment to the EU taxonomy and ESG disclosure and greenwashing prevention.
The Synesgy® platform (owned by CRIF) was used for the administration of the questionnaires in order to guarantee efficiency and transparency. To reach a significant market share, on the other hand, different channels were used (CRIF branch network, national trade associations, banks networks)
About 150 questions for companies to answer, in order to have an overall assessment of the ESG profile of companies. Each question is supported by a FAQ/Help section to simplify the user experience.
A few months after the start of the survey, the questionnaires were sent to more than 110 thousand companies, of which 18% collaborate with more than one leader who has joined the project. The activity is still ongoing and it is expected that the target can further increase significantly.