Call for greater transparency on climate change engagement

Climate Principles progress report published

There has been a call for greater transparency about the results of financial institutions’ engagement on climate change issues.

The remarks come in the latest progress report on the Climate Principles, the finance industry climate change group which includes Credit Agricole, HSBC, Standard Chartered, Swiss Re, F&C Asset Management and BNP Paribas. It’s also emerged that founding signatory Munich Re has quit the group, which is not to be confused with a similarly named group set up by US banks in 2008.

“Although there is evidence the institutions are engaging clients on climate issues, greater transparency on the outcomes of this engagement is encouraged,” the report states.

“Such knowledge-sharing would drive increased investor interest in the topic, and further support and encourage asset managers to develop more andfurther enhanced products to meet investor demand.”

Investors should also engage with companies on identifying commercial opportunities relating to climate adaptation, energy efficiency and renewable energy.

The 44-page report, prepared by the Climate Group and PricewaterhouseCoopers, states that despite progress in mainstreaming carbon and climate considerations in investment decisions, there is scope to develop green investments like sustainable property or products that finance low-carbon activities.

It also recommends public-private partnerships offering “fast-start financing” such as for funding for climate adaptation projects in developing countries.

“These partnerships could offer attractive rates of return under a clearly defined social and environmental mandate,” the report says.
The chair of the group has now passed to Credit Agricole from HSBC.