Daily ESG Briefing: Legal & General Retirement to slash annuity emissions by 50%

The latest developments in sustainable finance

Legal & General Retirement has committed to reducing the carbon emission intensity of its £80.7bn annuity book by 18.5% by 2025, and by 50% by 2030, with plans for a net-zero portfolio by 2050. At the same time the firm has launched its new ESG policy, which it claims is the pension risk transfer sector’s most comprehensive document outlining an approach to ESG. 

Brazil’s National Development Bank, the European Investment Bank, Raiffeisen Switzerland and the Retirement Benefits Authority of Kenya have joined the Informal Working Group that is developing a work plan for the new Task Force on Nature-related Financial Disclosures, which will launch in the second half of 2021. Corporates including H&M, Iberdrola, JBS, Reckitt Benckiser, Tesco and Rio Tinto have also joined. The Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality of the Netherlands was also chosen by TNFD partner organisations and IWG Co-chairs. 

A new impact investment firm has been launched by investor and businessman Chris James. Engine No.1 will actively invest in public and private companies through multiple strategies. 

71% of CFA Institute’s surveyed members believe that the rise of alternative data will make sustainability analysis more robust, while 62% agreed that sustainability is an area where human judgement and active management will thrive. Alongside alternative data, the report found three other key areas of sustainable investing: increased demand for sustainable investing expertise; investors driving firms to change their investment models and expand product offerings; and the relevance of systems thinking in sustainability analysis.

Financial data collection and analysis software provider, Diligend has launched its ESG and Diversity disclosure module for Limited Partners, General Partners, consultants, fund managers and fund administrators. The new offering allows clients to request specific ESG & Diversity data, in order to rate and assess considerations at the firm or fund level.

Leeds-based pension pool, Border to Coast Pensions Partnership, has co-invested £40m into Sleaford Renewable Energy Plant with Greencoat Capital, who acquired the Lincolnshire biomass plant in June.

The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) plans to engage with industry bodies and consumers to test support for a proposed set of guiding principles for ESG product disclosures before deciding whether they will be formally adopted. The principles were first mooted in a speech by FCA strategy head Richard Monk and is intended to combat greenwash and to support informed decision-making by consumers.