Stockholm (NordSIP) – Five hundred thirty-two institutional investors, representing USD 39 trillion in assets under management, are imposing numbers by any standards. On 13 September, this impressive gathering of financial heavyweights issued a joint statement coordinated by The Investor Agenda. Ahead of the 27th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) to be held in Egypt in November 2022, the statement urges governments to step up their climate ambition in line with the goal of limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C.
The 2022 Global Investor Statement to Governments on the Climate Crisis contains policy recommendations and encourages governments to engage more closely with investors. Among the most ambitious actions called for are mandated climate transition plans from investors. In calling for this action, investors are directly asking for more climate disclosure regulation of the finance sector, as well as climate regulation of companies. The signatories address some new policy areas, including a focus on tackling methane pollution, climate adaptation and resilience, and scaling up climate finance for developing countries.
“Investors are urgently seeking to manage their exposure to climate risks and increase the contribution that their investments make to the Paris Agreement goals,” write the signatories. “Investors are taking action as it is not only permitted by law but is in many cases required to ensure their ability to generate returns in the long-term as a core fiduciary duty and benefit from the opportunities associated with the shift to a net-zero emissions economy. We encourage governments to engage closely with investors to make sure these risks are effectively managed and that these opportunities are fully realized,” they conclude.
A large number of Nordic investors, from state pension funds to insurance companies, banks and asset managers, have signed the statement, joining their international peers. The complete list of signatories reads for many pages, demonstrating the campaign’s success so far.
The coordinating body, the Investor Agenda, was founded by seven major groups: Asia Investor Group on Climate Change, CDP, Ceres, Investor Group on Climate Change, Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change, Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), and UNEP Finance Initiative.
“Once again, investors are issuing a clear call to governments on the urgent need for public policy to reflect and support investor action,” comments David Atkin, CEO of PRI, one of the founding partners. “We know that more ambitious action on climate is needed, a fact compounded by increasing geopolitical tension and the devastation caused by intensifying extreme weather events. Never has the need for a bold, effective and coordinated policy response on climate been more pressing, and we urge governments – on behalf of investors – to heed these calls and take action.”