Clean Investor, May 24: Bank of America sets ambitious GHG reduction targets

RI’s regular Tuesday review of clean investing news

Bank of America has announced an ambitious new goal to reduce its absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 15% from 2011 to 2015, based on its 2010 baseline. “Reducing our emissions not only lessens the environmental impact of our global operations, but enhances our efficiency and delivers tremendous value for our company and shareholders,” said Bank of America Environmental Council Chair Catherine Bessant.
The Asian Development Bank is investing $60m to help set up three venture capital funds dedicated to new climate change technologies, primarily targeting China and India. The bank is injecting $20m each into the three funds – Aloe Environment Fund III, Keytone Ventures II, and VenturEast Life Fund III – which it says should leverage an additional $600-$700m of private sector investment.
The Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation, the $40.4bn (€46.2bn) US investor, has asked its investment consultant Callan Associates to search for timber managers amid a move to widen its allocation to alternative investments. Link

Blackrock New Energy Investment Trust has bought into an unnamed Chinese wind farm developer following a recent trip to China. It said the firm “stands to benefit from the pricing pressures currently being seen in the market”. It also said there is now a “real and significant opportunity” for renewable energy and energy efficiency to help offset any slowdown or reversal in nuclear power’s renaissance.

The latest changes to the NASDAQ OMX CRD Global Sustainability Index have been announced. Seven firms will be added: AngloGold Ashanti; Campbell Soup Co.; Goldcorp; Coca-Cola Co.; Merck & Co.; Syngenta and Wipro. Deletions include: Chevron; Duke Energy; PG&E; Rockwell Automation; TransAlta; Molson Coors and Verizon.

Climate Change Capital Private Equity is among new investors in Nujira, a developer of technology to reduce power consumption in smartphone transmitters. The investor is providing £6m of equity financing, and its director James Hook will join the Nujira board.The carbon pricing of global aviation and shipping was highlighted as a potential source of revenues at a recent meeting of the top-level European economic and financial affairs council (Ecofin) in Brussels. It would also “generate the price signal necessary to efficiently achieve emission reductions from these sectors”.

The European Investment Bank says the fight against climate change will continue to be a top priority. It said that in 2010, nearly 30% of its lending volume was related to projects significantly contributing to the reduction of green house gas emissions. Link

Ole Beier Sørensen, Chairman of the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC), was set to be among the speakers at the high-level ‘Better Policies for Better Lives’ conference to mark the 50th anniversary of the Organisations for Economic Cooperation and Development. The event takes place in Paris this week.

A panel on climate finance discussed carbon markets and feed-in tariffs at the European bank for Reconstruction and Development’s annual general meeting and business forum. The event was held in Astana, Kazakhstan earlier this month. Meanwhile, the EBRD has launched its third environmental sustainability bond, bringing its total issuance since the end of last year to €29m.

Man Group’s GLG Partners has launched the GLG Global Sustainability Equity Fund. The UCITS-compliant fund will combine a thematic approach with environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) factors and will be run by Jason Mitchell. “Sustainability is set to be one of the largest areas of global capital investment over the coming decades amid demographic, social and environmental change,” GLG said.

California: The implementation of an emissions cap-and-trade scheme has been suspended, according to reports. San Francisco Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith ruled that the California Air Resources Board (ARB) should “take no action” to implement cap-and-trade plans until it analyzes other greenhouse gas reduction policy options, a story from Reuters stated.