Today’s Solutions: May 31, 2023

A group of investors who control $5 trillion in assets together have pledged to cut the greenhouse gas emissions of their portfolios by as much as 29 percent in five years.

The group, which includes investors from Allianz and the Church of England, are all part of the UN convened Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance, a group that formed last year with the goal of reducing the emissions of their investment portfolios to net-zero by 2050. To reach the goal, the group announced its 2025 Target Setting Protocol Tuesday, which includes a target of reducing emissions across members’ portfolios by 16 to 29 percent of 2019 levels by 2025.

As reported in the Guardian, the investors will pinpoint the 20 companies most responsible for their portfolios’ emissions. They will also set specific targets for highly emitting sectors like oil and gas, transport, and utilities.

Some financial institutions have acted on the climate crisis by divesting entirely from certain companies or refusing to fund certain ventures. For example, Norway’s largest hedge fund divested in August from companies that lobby against climate action or make more than five percent of their revenue from coal or oil sands. The Net-Zero Asset Owners Alliance, however, takes a different approach, seeking instead to engage with the companies it invests in order to push the overall economy towards a just transition to renewable energy.

This approach involves encouraging companies to share regular reports on their climate actions and to craft plans to green their business. The alliance itself will also release yearly reports and plans to grow its membership to 200 or the assets under its control to $25 trillion.

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