Fostering Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure and its Financing

Global Infrastructure Basel Foundation (GIB) is a Swiss foundation based in Basel, Switzerland, working to promote the development and financing of sustainable and resilient infrastructure globally. Active since 2008, GIB works with multiple stakeholders ranging from city representatives to project developers and infrastructure financiers.

By successfully launching SuRe® at COP 21, GIB is actively supporting infrastructure development on the project level. SuRe® was developed by GIB and Natixis through a multi-stakeholder process e.g. through EIB, GEF, Mirova, Bouygues Construction, General Electrics, WWF, OECD and many others, which makes SuRe® fundamentally different from other standards. SuRe® is a global voluntary standard and helps to integrate state-of-the-art sustainability and resilience aspects into infrastructure development and upgrade. SuRe® integrates leading standards and consists of 65 criteria divided into 14 themes spanning environmental, social and governance (ESG) aspects. SuRe® aims to drive the integration of sustainability and resilient aspects into infrastructure through:

- establishing a common language and understanding of sustainable and resilient infrastructure projects between project developers, financiers, local authorities and end-users;

- providing guidance on how to manage sustainability and resilience aspects of infrastructure projects, both from a risk management and a benefit creation perspective, and starting from as early as possible in the projects’ life cycles.

SuRe® combines sustainability and resilience recognising the mutually beneficial relationships between both issues and the need to take a long-term view to infrastructure development in order to meet both present and future generations’ needs. SuRe® can be used to leverage both public and private investments in infrastructure in a way that ensures cost-effective access to critical services while strengthening resilience, maximising social benefits and limiting the environmental footprint. SuRe® contributes moreover to the fulfilment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The scope of SuRe® is not limited to greenfield projects. While project developers are encouraged to apply SuRe® as early as possible in the life cycle of an infrastructure, the standard can also be applied during the refurbishment and upgrading of brownfield projects. SuRe® will be compliant with the guidelines of ISEAL, the umbrella organisation for voluntary standards.

To integrate sustainability and resilience also into the financial service value chain, GIB developed Credit SuRe, a credit rating blueprint based on SuRe®. It aims to enhance credit ratings of sustainable and resilient infrastructure projects by integrating sustainability and resilience into infrastructure project assessment in order to reflect the true risk of a project, thereby facilitating access to international debt markets. Furthermore, GIB provides with InSuRe an ESG risk assessment tool for insurers and underwriters based on SuRe® as well as UNEP’s Principles of Sustainable Insurance (PSI). Considering sustainability and resilience factors in the underwriting process is likely to align pricing mechanisms for sustainable and resilient infrastructure projects and lead to affordable insurances whilst also supporting an insurers’ investment decisions.

GIB also provides services such as capacity building workshops and implementation services and has long-lasting experience in the South American, African and Asian markets.

Infrastructure, Sustainability, Resilience, Resource Efficiency, Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure, Green Infrastructure, Finance