Edition for 23 May 2020

Top Stories

As boomers hand over the keys to the stock market, sustainability-minded younger investors let their consciences lead (Market Watch)

  • “So you want earnings that are going to go up, but you also want earnings that will be good for the future of this world.” Guardia’s views on what is “good for the future” are eclectic, just like the diverse drivers luring more investors to embrace the “environmental, social and governance,” or ESG, investing category, a segment of the market also sometimes called sustainable, socially responsible or values investing.
  • The question now is, what is the right way for them to express those opinions?” That’s a high-stakes, nearly $21 billion question in fact — the amount of new money pulled into funds identified as “sustainable” in 2019.
  • BBH, in its report, concluded that ESG “doesn’t appear to be a passing fad.” Yet even with the inflows and the optimism, ESG remains a landscape fraught with challenges for all ages, from do-it-yourselfers like Kevin Guardia all the way up the investing food chain to someone like Larry Fink, head of $7 trillion asset manager BlackRock.

It’s time for our financial statements to reflect the vital value of nature (Corporate Knights)

  • Beyond the immediate health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 crisis, one of the most pressing threats facing Canada and the world is the degradation of nature, incontrovertibly exacerbated by climate change.
  • Shift that framing to a global model, replace bankruptcy with ecosystem, societal and economic collapse, and we get a clearer picture of the value of green accounting.
  • NGOs and numerous other organizations have emerged to provide guidance to reporting organizations and users, including the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB), the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), the Corporate Reporting Dialogue and the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC).

Carbon road map winning few friends, little influence (The Sydney Morning Herald)

  • Last December, as the world's horrified attention was drawn to the worst bushfires in Australia's known history, the nation was also making news for its efforts to dilute global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions during crucial climate negotiations in Madrid.
  • Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor during Question Time.Credit:Dominic Lorrimer "I am deeply pained by the attitude of the current Australian government: that still after the worst disaster that has ever hit the planet, the bushfires in Australia, that this government is still denying climate change and denying the fact that there is a lot that Australia can and should be doing," one of the United Nation's top climate negotiators, Christiana Figueres, later told the ABC.
  • In order to pull back towards 1.5 degrees of warming the world now needs to cut its emissions by 7.6 per cent annually.

UK approval for biggest gas power station in Europe ruled legal (Guardian)

  • The plant, which is being developed by Drax in North Yorkshire, would be the biggest gas power station in Europe, and could account for 75% of the UK’s power sector emissions when fully operational, according to the environmental lawyers for ClientEarth, which brought the judicial review.
  • The planning inspectorate recommended that ministers refuse permission for the 3.6GW gas plant because it “would undermine the government’s commitment, as set out in the Climate Change Act 2008, to cut greenhouse emissions” by having “significant adverse effects”.
  • At the meeting, the world’s nations must dramatically increase their pledges to cut carbon emissions to avoid a disastrous 3-4C rise in global temperatures.

We spend a lot of time online - so how do we make data centres greener? (CBC)

  • Microsoft announced in January that it aims to remove more carbon from the atmosphere than it emits by 2030, partly by investing in carbon capture technologies.
  • In response to Anand Ram's article last week on investment in green hydrogen, reader Chris Lyons had this to say: "I just want to point out that your article about green hydrogen didn't mention some very important Canadian work that is happening," Lyons said, citing as an example Calgary-based Proton Technologies, which has been developing technology to produce green hydrogen from abandoned oilfields.

2020 GCSA: Creating a Sustainable World by Recognizing Those Who are Building It (Business Wire Energy News)

  • Companies worldwide with an outstanding commitment to sustainable development have the opportunity to earn the recognition and acclaim they deserve by entering the 2020 Global Corporate Sustainability Awards (GCSA).
  • 2020 GCSA embraces the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) outlined in the UN’s 2030 agenda.
  • Guided by the UN’s sustainable development outline, GCSA has four key objectives: GCSA offers awards and recognition in three major categories: Outstanding Professional, Sustainability Reporting, and Best Practice.

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