NordSIP (Stockholm) – The London School of Economics’ (LSE) Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment (GRI) and Candriam, a sustainable investment manager, announced a new partnership to advance socially inclusive climate investments.
The “Sustainability, Investment, Inclusion and Impact” (SI3) Initiative is a three-year project to facilitate research, dialogue and promote the international exchange of ideas on how to pursue climate action that delivers social impact.
This initiative is motivated by the momentum to ‘build back better’ in the aftermath of the COVID-19 epidemic by focusing on recovery plans that accelerate green investments that have a strong social dimension to deliver high-quality jobs and community renewal. According to Candriam, “to be successful, climate policies will need to be fair and seen to be fair by workers, consumers and citizens. Investors can play an important role in delivering this just transition through their shareholder engagement, capital allocation and policy advocacy.”
The partnership will be led by GRI Professor in Practice for Sustainable Finance, Nick Robins with oversight from Naïm Abou-Jaoudé (Pictured), CEO of Candriam and Chairman of New York Life Investments International. “Achieving the Paris Agreement and delivering the UN Sustainable Development Goals will require a rewiring of the financial system to meet the long-term needs of our economies and societies,” Abou-Jaoudé said. “As we look to the future, Candriamis proud to partner with the Grantham Research Institute to launch a world-class research and collaboration initiative to help support the transition to a sustainable and inclusive global economy.”
The partners hope that research from the SI3 Initiative will identify how institutional investors can help close the social gap in climate change. One of the goals of the project is to produce actionable research ahead of the COP26 Climate Summit to be hosted in Glasgow in November 2021. To this end, researchers will focus on developing a comprehensive framework for the investment industry to accelerate change, including the role of different asset classes, geographies and policy reforms in facilitating inclusive climate action.
“The just transition is the next frontier for investor action on climate change,” Robins added. “I’m delighted to join with CANDRIAM to design this international initiative that can make the issues of environmental sustainability, inclusion and impact come to life and so show investors can contribute to a better world after COVID-19.”
Although the issue of inclusive climate action has risen in prominence during the Coronavirus epidemic, it is not a new concern. One prominent example of a negative reaction to climate action was the rise of the yellow vest movement in France in 2018 and 2019. While a product of several interacting political and economic factors, the protest was partly motivated by an increase in fuel taxes introduced by Emmanuel Macron’s government in the context of the 2015 Paris commitments. Consumption of fossil fuels has to be contained, but the solution that integrates social concerns has to take workers and local communities into account.
Image Courtesy of Candriam