Edition for 23 June 2020

Top Stories

Companies Urged to Fortify Supply Chains from Climate Change Disruption (Business Wire)

  • The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) and HSBC released a new report today urging companies to prepare supply chains for the risk of climate change disruptions that threaten to raise costs and jeopardize their ability to meet customer needs.
  • Co-authored by Dr. Christy Slay, TSC Director of Technical Alignment and Dr. Kevin Dooley, TSC Chief Scientist and faculty at Arizona State University (ASU), with funding and support from the HSBC Centre of Sustainable Finance, Improving Supply Chain Resilience to Manage Climate Change Risks warns that climate change will result in more extreme weather events and continued sea-level rise continue to disrupt supply chains configurations with increasing more frequency.
  • “As companies worldwide are in the midst of dealing with COVID-19’s impact on their business operations and their supply chains, current events put in sharp relief the impact of supply chain disruptions on a global scale,” said Patricia Gomes, Regional Head of Global Trade and Receivable Finance (GTRF).

Q&A Roundtable: The Future of Impact Finance (Stanford Social Innovation Review)

  • Six leading members of the Impact & Sustainable Finance Faculty Consortium discuss trends, predictions, foibles, and tensions related to the rapidly growing field their group has been focused upon for the past four years.
  • Interest and investment in impact and sustainable finance have soared in recent years, highlighting a continuing shift of the field from a niche practice of do-good investors to a mainstream response to significant social problems.
  • To kick off the series, we are taking a broad look at the field in a conversation I moderated in the spring of 2020 with five other professors in the consortium. 

Reducing carbon footprint will ensure future food chain (Forbes)

  • According to climate change experts, supply chain emissions are often over five times as high as a corporation's direct emissions, leaving a significant footprint on the environment.  
  • But Döhler’s solution is innovative; it is the first company to implement SAP Product Carbon Footprint Analytics (PCFA), a new tool for tracing carbon emissions with SAP S/4HANA and SAP Analytics Cloud.
  • At Döhler today, emissions are taken into consideration along with costs, and Döhler’s IT expert believes emissions will soon surpass traditional costs when it comes to making investment decisions.

After BP takes a hit, investors widen climate change campaign (Thomson Reuters Foundation)

  • Investors managing £1.8 trillion ($2.2 trillion) in assets are widening a campaign pressing oil majors to better reflect climate risks in their accounting, and will soon target other businesses with heavy fossil fuel exposure, the group said on Monday.
  • Early last year, the investors began lobbying the Big Four accounting firms - EY, Deloitte, PwC and KPMG - to do more to ensure climate-related risks are adequately reflected in company financial statements they audit. 
  • The campaign is one of a number of efforts by investors to push companies on environmental policies, amid concerns many businesses are both contributing to the planet's warming while also failing to take full stock of the risks they face.

New Campaign Urges UK to End Biomass Subsidies (NRDC)

  • The United Kingdom’s clean energy transition has a dirty little secret: biomass energy.
  • But the UK cannot be a climate leader while offering billions of pounds in subsidies to Drax and other power stations that burn wood as fuel under the false pretense that it is environmentally friendly.
  • A new campaign that NRDC is helping lead, Cut Carbon Not Forests, is aimed at directing public pressure on Parliamentarians to end financial subsidies to Drax Power and others for dirty biomass energy.

Miners' late nod towards climate risks not enough for investors (The Age)

  • Released on Monday, the Minerals Council of Australia's three-page climate change policy outlines a "collective commitment" to the goals of the Paris agreement to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels and to achieve net-zero emissions.
  • Investors say Australia's mining sector needs to take greater action on climate change.
  • Investor Group on Climate Change chief executive Emma Herd, who represents institutional investors who have total funds under management of more than $2 trillion, said climate risk disclosure was the biggest issue facing the resources sector.

Investors threaten Brazil divestment over Amazon deforestation (Taipei Times)

  • Seven major European investment firms said they would divest from beef producers, grains traders and even government bonds in Brazil if they do not see progress in resolving the surging destruction of the Amazon rainforest.
  • The rising threats from investors with more than US$2 trillion in assets under management, including Finland-based Nordea and the UK’s Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM), show how the private sector is taking global action to protect the world’s largest rainforest.
  • Norway’s largest pension fund KLP said it was engaging with trading firms Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), Cargill and Bunge and judging if their environmental policies are adequate.

Morgan Stanley Dumps the Pebble Mine, Northern Dynasty (NRDC)

  • Adding to the financial woes of embattled Pebble Mine owner Northern Dynasty Minerals, global investment banking firm Morgan Stanley filed a form 13F with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 31, 2020 reporting a reduction of 99.14 percent in its shareholdings in the proposed Bristol Bay copper and gold mine’s underfunded Canadian owner
  • Based on that commitment, leaders from Bristol Bay have urged Morgan Stanley to dissociate itself and its clients from Northern Dynasty and the Pebble Mine, and last month representatives from the region -- including the Bristol Bay Native Corporation, United Tribes of Bristol Bay, Bristol Bay Native Association, Bristol Bay Economic Development Corporation, Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association, United Fishermen of Bristol Bay, and Salmon State -- met by video conference with Morgan Stanley representatives to confirm their longstanding opposition to the project and applaud Morgan Stanley’s response.
  • Deep concern about environmental and social impacts of the project have not been answered through the accelerated, deeply flawed Army Corps of Engineers permitting process, as comments from stakeholders across the ideological spectrum (including several federal agencies) on the quality of the environmental review have been consistently negative.

How green sand could capture billions of tons of carbon dioxide (MIT Technology Review)

  • Scientists are taking a harder look at using carbon-capturing rocks to counteract climate change, but lots of uncertainties remain.
  • After a site visit in early March, researchers with the San Francisco nonprofit Project Vesta determined that the twin inlets provided an ideal location to study an obscure method of capturing the carbon dioxide driving climate change.
  • Project Vesta unveiled plans to move ahead with its pilot study in the Caribbean in May. That closely followed online payment company Stripe’s announcement that it would pre-pay the nonprofit to remove 3,333 tons of carbon dioxide for $75 per ton, as part of its commitment to spend at least $1 million annually on negative-emissions projects.

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