In the context of the UN climate summit that took place in New York on 23 September 2014, 347 global investors with AUM exceeding USD 24'000 billion have published a common declaration on climate change. By signing the declaration, Ethos reiterates its engagement on climate change. In particular, Ethos will enhance its dialogue with listed companies and the SIX Swiss Exchange to encourage more companies to publish precise objectives with regard to GHG emissions reduction.
The 347 signatories of the declaration are aware that climate change is a significant financial risk for investors due to the cost related to the transition to a low carbon economy and the adaptation of society to the physical impacts of climate change. By co-signing this initiative, the investors commit to:
- Collaborate with policy makers to support measures that encourage the financing of transition to a low carbon economy
- Identify and evaluate low carbon investment opportunities
- Develop investors capacity to assess the risks and opportunities linked to climate change and integrate this information in the investment decisions
- Enhance dialogue with investee companies on the topic of climate change
- Report on actions taken and progress made.
In support of the Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) initiative
In Switzerland, due to the lack of CSR reporting requirements for listed companies, the transparency is not sufficient to allow investors to put in place low carbon investment strategies. In the context of the annual revision of its extra-financial (ESG) ratings, Ethos notes that only 36% of the 160 Swiss listed companies under review in 2014 publish their direct and indirect GHG emissions. And only 20% publish their targets for emissions reduction.
At a time when many in the investor community and civil society are rallying around the climate change issue, Ethos urges the SIX Swiss Exchange to publish transparency requirements for Swiss listed companies, as have already done the exchanges that have joined the initiative for Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE Initiative). The exchanges that are partners to this initiative have committed to promoting sustainable investments and enhancing the extra-financial performance of listed companies.
Enhanced climate change reporting will allow investors to integrate in their investment process the risks and challenges related to climate change and, together with policy makers, contribute to financing the transition to a low carbon economy.
Ethos participates to the following initiatives in favour of the climate.