Singapore and Switzerland sign up to global climate data project

It is the latest project to emerge from the collaborative climate data space.

Key public and private stakeholders from Switzerland and Singapore have announced major collaborations with the Net-Zero Data Public Utility (NZDPU) this week.

The NZDPU, which will store publicly accessible corporate climate data once complete, was launched to fanfare last year by a high-powered coalition formed by French president Emmanuel Macron and Michael Bloomberg.

Supporting members include global standard setters, ESG data providers and financial sector climate initiative GFANZ. It is chaired by former SEC and TCFD boss Mary Schapiro.

The NZDPU is the latest project to emerge from the collaborative climate data space, following the EU’s sustainability data repository ESAP, Hong Kong’s GSF data repository, open source platform OS Climate, and the legacy CDP disclosure library.

It will ultimately be transferred to the UN under current plans.

Yesterday, the Swiss State Secretariat for International Finance (SIF) and four domestic financial sector trade groups signed up to road-test the beta version of the NZDPU ahead of a pilot launch at COP28 later this year.

Among the utility’s “early testers” are Lombard Odier, Pictet, UBS, Swiss Life Asset Managers, LGT Bank, Helvetia, and a handful of other Swiss financial institutions which are either members of GFANZ or have implemented TCFD climate disclosures.

Four trade groups are also participating, including Asset Management Association Switzerland (AMAS). Iwan Deplazes, the organisation’s chair, said AMAS “is convinced that NZDPU is the right tool to document the net zero transition” and called on members to support the initiative.

Separately, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Singapore Exchange (SGX) have signed an agreement to transfer climate data which has been disclosed by companies in the island state.

The collaboration aims to leverage disclosures made via ESGenome, a platform developed by MAS and currently being piloted by SGX-listed companies, which uses data capture and automation to streamline the disclosure process.

Work on the collaboration will commence in the first quarter of 2024.

Once access to the NZDPU is established, companies which use the ESGenome portal may consent for the information to be transmitted to the global repository. Users of ESGenome could also be granted direct access to the utility in the future.

NZDPU chair Schapiro described the agreement as “a ground-breaking commitment” and potentially the first of many such partnerships for the utility.

Carbon disclosure platform CDP will separately provide “a foundational layer of data” to be incorporated into the utility after coming to an earlier agreement with the project organisers.

Under its first phase of development, the NZDPU will house company and financial institution-level emissions data, and climate and emissions reduction targets. Further environmental and ESG metrics are to be added over time.

It comes days after MAS announced a global initiative to develop an ESG data directory for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs).