– US$35 trillion Climate Action 100+ publishes first initiative progress report
– Breakthrough commitments have been achieved, yet step change in broader corporate response to climate change is necessary given US$20 trillion systemic risk to global economy
In the first Climate Action 100+ progress report released today, it is clear that despite significant progress achieved, far more needs to be done by the world’s largest corporate greenhouse gas (GHG) emitters in tackling climate change.
Climate Action 100+ brings together more than 370 global investors with over US$35 trillion in assets under management, seeking to ensure some of the world’s largest companies take necessary action on climate change. The 161 ‘focus companies’ engaged through the initiative are collectively responsible for over two thirds of global industrial GHG emissions and represent a combined market capitalisation in excess of US$8 trillion.
Supported by Climate Action 100+ investor engagement, a range of breakthrough net zero emission commitments are now in place. Significant progress has been seen across a range of industries, many of which are among the most challenging to decarbonise. Examples of focus companies making substantial net zero commitments over just the past seven months alone include; HeidelbergCement, Duke Energy, Nestle, Daimler, VW, Thyssenkrupp, ArcelorMittal, BHP Billiton, Centrica and Saint-Gobain, among others.
Despite these examples of first-wave leadership, the analysis featured in the report shows a significant step change is still required from the majority of focus companies in addressing climate change as a strategic business risk.
The report was released today by the Asia Investor Group on Climate Change (AIGCC) and its four global partners: Ceres; Investor Group on Climate Change (IGCC); Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC) and Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI).
Record 515 institutional investors managing $35 trillion in assets urge governments to step up ambition to tackle climate changeDownload
- Largest-ever group of investors to call on governments to phase out thermal coal power worldwide, put a price on carbon pollution, end government subsidies for fossil fuels, update and strengthen nationally-determined contributions by 2020
- New report finds more investor climate action than ever before — 1,200 investors took action on climate change in line with The Investor Agenda in its first year
September 19, 2019, NEW YORK: Ahead of next week’s United Nations Climate Action Summit, a record 515 institutional investors managing $35 trillion in assets urged governments worldwide to step up action to tackle climate change and achieve the Paris Agreement’s goals.
The Global Investor Statement to Governments on Climate Change, developed by the seven Founding Partners of The Investor Agenda, calls on governments to phase out thermal coal power worldwide, put a meaningful price on carbon pollution, end government subsidies for fossil fuels, and update and strengthen nationally-determined contributions to meet the emissions reduction goal of the Paris Agreement no later than 2020.
“The global shift to clean energy is underway, but much more needs to be done by governments to accelerate the low carbon transition and to improve the resilience of our economy, society and the financial system to climate risks,” the investors wrote. They warned the current government commitments leave an “ambition gap” that will not prevent global average temperature from rising beyond the 1.5 degree threshold that scientists warn could trigger catastrophic and irreversible effects of climate change.
The investors’ call to action published today comes as UN Secretary-General António Guterres is asking all leaders, from governments and the private sector, to present plans – at the UN Climate Action Summit on September 23 or at the latest by December 2020 – to cut greenhouse gas emissions 45% by 2030 and reach carbon neutrality by 2050. “I am also asking all investors to scale up green ventures, to increase lending for low-carbon solutions and to stop, in effect, financing pollution,” Secretary-General António Guterres said at a preparatory meeting for the Summit.
Signing the Global Investor Statement to Governments on Climate Change is an action item in the Policy Advocacy focus area of the The Investor Agenda. Launched in September 2018 by seven Founding Partners – Asia Investor Group on Climate Change, CDP, Ceres, Investor Group on Climate Change, Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change, Principles for Responsible Investment and UNEP Finance Initiative — The Investor Agenda is a collaborative initiative that aims to accelerate and scale up the investor actions worldwide that are critical to tackling climate change and achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement with the aim of keeping global average temperature rise to no more than 1.5-degrees Celsius. It provides investors with a set of actions that they can take in four key focus areas: Investment, Corporate Engagement, Investor Disclosure and Policy Advocacy.
The Founding Partners also announced today the release of The Investor Agenda Annual Progress Report, which found that nearly 1,200 investors have taken action in one or more of the focus areas of The Investor Agenda. More than 750 investors have engaged with or directly influenced portfolio companies to act on climate change, more than 400 investors have stepped up their own disclosure on climate change, and more than 260 have set a climate target.
“Investors are stepping up their response to climate change and increasingly aligning their investment with the goals of the Paris Agreement,” said Rebecca Mikula-Wright, Director, Asia Investor Group on Climate Change (AIGCC). “The Investor Agenda has a pivotal role to play as a platform for supporting investors to lead ambition and catalyse sustainable investment, while promoting engagement across all regions and jurisdictions.”
“The Investor Agenda provides an unprecedented global forum for investors to accelerate action on climate change and drive transformation of capital markets to deliver a 1.5-degrees Celsius economy. To do that investors need to take further action themselves, but also require stronger incentives from governments” said Paul Simpson, CDP CEO.
“The global reach and potential impact of The Investor Agenda and the global collaboration of the seven organizations are quite extraordinary,” noted Mindy Lubber, Ceres CEO and President. “With the immense power and influence that investors hold in our global economy, they have a tremendous opportunity and responsibility to act at the urgent pace and scale required to keep average global temperature rise to no more than 1.5-degrees Celsius.”
“By working with our peers globally and across the regions, we can scale up ambition and action to tackle climate change and deliver on the promise of the Paris Agreement,” said Emma Herd, Chief Executive Officer, Investor Group on Climate Change (IGCC). “Collaboration is the key to success, and investors must play our part. The Investor Agenda is the platform we need to drive real investor action at this crucial point in time.”
“Climate change poses an unprecedented threat to the global economy,” said Stephanie Pfeifer, CEO of the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC). “Investors representing nearly half the world’s invested capital are sending a clear message that they need to see far greater ambition from governments in addressing the climate crisis. A considerable number of countries have already committed to delivering net zero emission economies by 2050. Investors are asking that others now follow their lead.”
“The Investor Agenda has a critical role to play in compelling investors to act and bring about lasting change around climate,” said Fiona Reynolds, CEO of Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). “Ambition and meaningful action from governments, business and the financial sector is imperative to curb the current trajectory of global warming. These groups must act now to curb the climate emergency the world is facing by reaching the goals of the Paris Agreement to realise 1.5-degrees Celsius.”
“There is a growing urgency for investors and corporations to act on climate change goals. As of today, temperatures have risen 1-degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels,” said Eric Usher, Head of UNEP Finance Initiative. “To keep the rise to within 1.5-degrees Celsius globally, leadership from within the investor community will be key. The Investor Agenda is one critical platform in supporting investors in their individual actions.”
Asian investors with US$2.3 trillion in assets join Climate Action 100+
World’s largest pension fund GPIF of Japan announced as a Supporter of initiative.
Initiative drives momentum in investor engagement activity across Asia, with upswing in signatories across the region.
22 October 2018: Climate Action 100+ is today announcing strong growth in investor participation across Asia and Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF), as the latest investor to join the initiative. As the world’s largest single pension fund1. GPIF’s decision to join Climate Action 100+ adds further significant momentum in global growth of the investor-led corporate engagement initiative.
“Climate Action 100+ is honoured to welcome GPIF as a Supporter. The risks and the opportunities of climate change call for global partnership and GPIF’s support will be vital to our success,” said Anne Simpson, Investment Director, CalPERS and Climate Action 100+ Steering Committee Chair.
The total number of investors now involved in the initiative has now surpassed 3102, representing over US$32 trillion in assets collectively under management.
Read the full Media Release
Nearly 400 investors with US$32 trillion in assets step up action on climate change
SAN FRANCISCO, 12 SEPTEMBER 2018 – The Investor Agenda launched today in San Francisco will support investors in accelerating and scaling-up the actions that are critical to tackling climate change and achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement. Its launch also demonstrates the significant momentum already evident, with 392 investors with US $32 trillion in assets collectively under management, using The Investor Agenda to highlight climate action they are already taking and making new commitments.
Announced as part of PRI in Person and the Global Climate Action Summit, The Investor Agenda provides a way for investors to directly report actions they are taking, and scale-up their commitment to act, across four key focus areas: Investment, Corporate Engagement, Investor Disclosure, and Policy Advocacy.
Capturing new data, the Investor Agenda seeks over time to reflect the full breadth and scale of global investor-led action on climate change. Bringing together and helping drive participation in a broad range of global investor initiatives, it also supports investors in taking greater action. This offers benefit to investors, in being able to better manage climate risks and capture low-carbon opportunities as a result, while also scaling-up the investor led contribution to achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement. Showcasing investor leadership on climate change will also be used as a way to inspire bolder commitment from investors and their peers, raising the bar and building on existing momentum.
Read the full Media Release
Read the Fact Sheet
AIGCC CEO/CIO Asset owner Roundtable
AIGCC held the inaugural CEO/CIO Asset owner Roundtable in September 2017. This forum is the flagship event for AIGCC, bringing asset owners from Asia and internationally together in a forum of peer to peer sharing of knowledge and information. This assists in providing guidance and information developed by global investor peers on the benefits of integrating climate change risks and opportunities into their investment policies and processes.
Following on from the inaugural event, the 2018 Roundtable will once again be held in Singapore on September 12th 2018 as a side event of the Milken Institute Asia Summit. This event is a private, invitation-only event for around 20 CEO and CIO representatives from Asian institutional investors and international guests, conducted under Chatham House rules.
The aim of the event is to build on the knowledge developed in the 2017 Roundtable where the impact of climate risk for investors in Asia was discussed. It also aims to develop a deeper understanding of where climate implications can fit within ESG policy and management frameworks and how they could be applied for investors in the region.
The roundtable format discussed the latest issues of relevance to investors in the region and assist in developing resources to be made available to all investors. The report: Incorporating Climate Change into Investment Strategy, A Guide for Investors, was discussed and incorporated feedback from the 2017 event to allow investors to contribute meaningfully to the development of the guide. The guide was then translated into Chinese and Japanese and are now also available on the website.
The Asia Investor Group organises similar capacity building workshops and events in Asia for all investors including investment managers and service providers in the region that cover topics such as investor and corporate disclosure against the Taskforce on Climate Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), engagement and more.
Climate Action 100+ investors scale up engagement with greenhouse gas emitters, add more focus companies to drive clean energy transitionDownload
Climate Action 100+ investors scale up engagement with greenhouse gas emitters, add more focus companies to drive clean energy transition
More influential investors including AllianceBernstein, Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corporation, USD $43 billion UK pension pool Boarders to Coast Pension Partnership, and USD $64 billion Australian pension fund UniSuper sign on to initiative.
3 July 2018: Investor signatories to Climate Action 100+ have scaled up engagement with systematically important greenhouse gas emitters, while expanding their focus list of companies, adding 61 companies (Known as the + list) that have significant opportunities to drive the clean energy transition and help achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement.
Launched in December 2017 at the One Planet Summit, with 225 investors with $26 trillion in assets under management, Climate Action 100+ is now backed by 289 investors with nearly $30 trillion in assets under management, mobilising across 29 countries. The full list of investor signatories can be found here.
Japanese financial institution restricts finance to coal power
May 9, 2018 Tokyo, Japan — In response to the Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company’s announcement on coal power plant finance restriction, a group of Environmental NGOs, Japan Center for a Sustainable Environment and Society (JACSES), Friends of the Earth Japan (FoE Japan), Kiko Network, 350.org Japan, Greenpeace Japan and Rainforest Action Network, issued the following statement:
“We welcome the news of the Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company adopting a policy to end new project financing for overseas coal power plants (1). As far as we know this is the first time that a Japanese financial institution has announced such a policy indicating the first step towards divestment from coal development. We commend this forward-thinking action taken by the Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company.
However, science indicates that we cannot allow any new coal plants to be built if want to keep global warming well below 2 degrees Celsius as set out in the Paris Agreement and prevent catastrophic climate change. So we compel the Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company to take a step further by also restricting project finance for domestic coal power plants projects as well.
Major European insurance firms such as AXA and Allianz are leading the way by divesting from businesses that are involved in large-scale coal-fired power plant expansion projects. We foresee that this trend will expand throughout the financial sector.
It has been reported by the Nikkei Newspaper that Nippon Life Insurance Company is also considering putting in place similar restrictions around lending to new coal fired power plants.
Japanese financial institutions, starting with — Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Mizuho Financial Group, and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group — should take heed of actions taken by the Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company and act accordingly by adopting policies that will restrict new lending and investment into both international and domestic coal-fired power plant projects and companies involved in coal development and move toward divestment from the coal sector.”
Sourced from: Japan Center for a Sustainable Environment and Society (JACSES) and 350.org
The $7.7 trillion Transition: Major AIGCC report charts Asian climate finance
Asia Investor Group on Climate Change (AIGCC) launch:
The $7.7 trillion transition: Major new report charts Asian climate finance
Tuesday 6 September, Singapore: To mark the launch of the new Asia Investor Group on Climate Change (AIGCC) today in Singapore, the group is releasing the most comprehensive analysis to date of climate finance sector activity in Asia.
The report – Investing for the climate in Asia undertaken by Asia Research and Engagement (ARE), with the support of Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ), reviewed the disclosure of leading domestic financial institutions across the Asia Pacific region to understand the state of the finance industry’s response to climate change. This review included 36 banks, 30 investors, and 24 insurers.
It revealed a significant shift toward embedding climate risk and responsible investment into core business activities. However, much remains to be done, with financial regulators needing to take steps to help catalyse the shift to low carbon investment in order to reduce systemic risks and improve competitiveness.
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