Over Half of Lenders Expect Use of ESG Reporting Standard, Survey Finds

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by KnowESG

More than half of lenders and investors said that reporting against the Sustainability Reporting Standard for Social Housing (SRS) is “becoming expected” of housing providers.

A survey by Sustainability for Housing (SfH), which oversees the SRS, found that 68 housing associations and 36 financial institutions have now adopted the standard.

SfH said the providers concerned manage more than 1.5 million homes, equivalent to 34% of England’s social housing stock, while the lenders and investors that have adopted the standard represent the majority of the £90bn of private investment in UK social housing.

Feedback from the SfH survey showed that 34% of housing providers thought their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) reports had led them to accelerate planned actions.

The SRS was launched in response to increasing interest in ESG credentials from investors. It aims to provide a uniform framework for adopters to report against.

SfH said 25 housing providers had accessed the debt capital markets, issuing £5.9bn of public bonds, of which 81% were linked to ESG.

Of these, 13 providers have adopted the SRS, issuing over £3.4bn of ESG-linked public bonds. This represents close to 60% of the total raised since the start of last year.

“Today’s report reflects the huge progress social housing providers have made on their ESG journey,” said Brendan Sarsfield, chair of the SfH board.

“The standard has provided the spark needed to improve the sector’s relationship with investors while starting on much-needed ESG-focused work that will benefit residents.”

Mr Sarsfield said the SRS would be updated to “stretch landlords on their sustainability commitments”.

Source: Inside Housing

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