Scottish Widows announces £1.4bn of new climate investment funds

Scottish Widows has launched its new Global Environmental Solutions Fund, focusing on investing pension scheme assets into firms that provide solutions to climate issues.

Issues covered by the fund include global greenhouse gas emissions, food security, pollution and biodiversity loss.

As part of a range of new strategies applying to £1.4bn of assets, the new fund targets firms involved in advancing alternative energy generation and supply, clean mobility, transport and infrastructure sustainability, forestry, sustainable agriculture, biodiversity preservation, and pollution prevention.

It was developed in partnership with Schroders, and invests in companies that get at least half of their revenues from goods and services that facilitate sustainable alternatives in transportation, electricity and heat production, water use, agriculture, or industrial manufacturing.

Firms that direct at least 20 per cent of their capital expenditure to adapting their businesses or products and services to the circular economy are eligible for the fund.

Companies that Schroders deems as exerting ‘significant’ influence through their policies and practices over their supply chains or customers to reduce emissions are also eligible.

Schroders will also seek to remove exposure to commodity-driven deforestation in the companies held in the fund by 2025 as part of their overall Plan for Nature commitment.

“We recently called for the industry and government to tackle environmental crisis and nature degradation together through joined up, focused action,” commented Scottish Widows head of responsible investments and stewardship, Maria Nazarova-Doyle.

“With the launch of our new fund, we’re taking steps ourselves towards driving major investment into better outcomes for the environment as well as our customers.

“We have an urgent imperative to support the companies attempting to drive the change our planet desperately needs, while protecting the savings and livelihoods of our members in the long run.

“More innovative solutions are on the horizon, but we must work together to ensure they become a reality.”

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