At a United Nations-sponsored meeting on May 10, more than two dozen leading U.S. and European institutional investors, managing more than $3 trillion in assets, pledged to invest $1 billion in technologies that would help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. They also called on U.S. companies to release information about the financial risks they face from climate change.
The investors said that, because climate change will have a far-reaching impact on the global economy, there is a strong need for companies to address the issue. They released a 10-point action plan, in which they commit to ranking the world's 100 largest companies on their plans to tackle global warming. They also say they will urge the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission to require firms to disclose financial risks related to climate change.
"Corporate and financial leaders need to look strategically at climate change and how it will impact the long-term health of businesses, industries, and our economy," said Connecticut State Treasurer Denise L. Nappier, one of the 26 investors behind the action plan. Investors can benefit from opportunities, such as wind farms, that are becoming profitable as greenhouse gas limits are enacted around the world, she said.
The UN meeting was attended by more than 375 leaders in the financial and corporate world, including seven state treasurers and the heads of 10 large pension funds. It was sponsored by the investor group CERES and the UN Foundation.