The world’s largest investors, worth around $20 trillion, say much more needs to be done in the fight against climate change. Charlotte Reid investigates this surprising new voice in the climate change debate.
Investors, altogether worth around one third of the world’s GDP, have called for urgent policy to be enacted to address climate change.
The 285 investors want action that will ensure long-term sustainability of the world economy but also said investments need to be made into solutions for climate change.
Christina Figueres, executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) said that governments are keen to “move towards a low-carbon future”. However, she stressed that “to get there fast enough will require huge new investments in clean energy”.
Figueres added that “a major part” of guaranteeing the sustainability of the economy “is directly linked to the pensions and life insurance of ordinary people around the world”.
Investors calling for action against climate change has more than doubled since November 2008, when 150 investors worth $9 trillion first came together to urge governments to act on climate change.
Despite this the International Energy Agency says that the current level of investment is still too low. Similarly, Ceres, an organisation that works with companies to become more sustainable, say that current investments into low-carbon technology are not enough.
Dr Wolfgang Engshuber, Chair of the Advisory Council of the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, said that climate change will bring about “new opportunities for investors”.
Dr Engshuber added: “These will gain traction only if governments play their part in laying down well-designed and effective climate change policies.”