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Investment Consultants Launch Joint Initiative for Global Net Zero Emissions

By Yasmine Masi22 September 2021

Twelve investment advisory firms, with US$10 trillion of assets under advice for institutional asset owners, have founded the Net Zero Investment Consultants Initiative (NZICI). The programme commits to the goal of global net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or sooner through nine explicit action points.

The initiative is endorsed by the United Nations’ Race to Zero campaign and supported by the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). It was signed by Barnett Waddingham, bfinance, Cambridge Associates, Cardano, Frontier, Hymans Robertson, JANA, LCP, Meketa, Redington, Willis Towers Watson and Wilshire.

The commitments developed for the initiative will enable the firms to work closely with other signatories of the Race to Zero campaign, and align with other projects including the UN’s Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance and the Net Zero Asset Manager Initiative.

The firms have committed to integrating advice on net zero alignment into their investment consulting services, and working with their institutional asset owner clients to identify the investment risks from climate change and develop policies that align their portfolios to a net zero pathway.

“We believe that global investment consultants, working closely with our asset owner clients, have a vital part to play in the transition towards a resilient Net Zero economy and we are committed as a firm to making a difference,” said David Vafai, CEO at bfinance.

“This initiative is an important milestone for us: we are making some significant changes to policies and processes as we look to deliver on commitments.”

The initiative will also support global efforts to decarbonise the economy and help reach the target of 50% emissions reduction by 2030 or sooner. The firms will help clients to prioritise investments in real economy emissions reductions solutions and opportunities.

“As investors and stewards of long-term capital, it is also essential that our commitment to sustainability reach beyond the walls of our firm and permeate directly across our work with clients,” said David Druley, CEO at Cambridge Associates.

“We are lucky to already be working with several clients that are leading on the full spectrum of what needs to be done from decarbonisation to investing in real world solutions and are looking forward to utilising this expertise across our broader client base.”

The signatories committed to setting emissions reduction targets across their business operations, so that they would be in line with 1.5 degree Celsius scenarios. The firms also pledged to release annual progress reports to the public.

 

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