ILMARINEN RECEIVES HIGHEST RATING IN GLOBAL CLIMATE INDEX
Ilmarinen has received the highest AAA rating in the Global Climate Index carried out by Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP), which compares the carbon risk management of the largest investors. Ilmarinen was the highest rated Finnish company in the comparison, coming in 9th. Pension funds from Australia, UK and USA topped the list. Only 17 companies out of 500 received the best AAA rating.
In addition to environmental impacts, climate change involves significant financial risks that investors need to factor in. The Global Climate Index measures how well investors are prepared for these risks.
– The carbon risk of investments can manifest if, for instance, companies’ operating environments, regulations or markets change. As a long-term responsible investor, Ilmarinen wishes to take these risks into account systematically, which is why we have integrated climate issues into our investment decision-making process, says Ilmarinen’s CIO Mikko Mursula.
Ilmarinen has divested from companies dependent on coal, unless the company has a credible plan for reducing its consumption of coal in the future.
On the other hand, climate change also opens up new opportunities, for instance, for companies that generate clean-tech solutions and thereby aim to mitigate climate change or help adapt to it.
– Ilmarinen actively seeks investees whose business relates, for example, to renewable energy, clean water or improving resource efficiency. Our goal is to double the share of business that generates solutions for sustainable development in our equity investments by 2020, Mursula says.
Highest rise in the ranking
Ilmarinen’s position in the Global Climate Index rose clearly from the previous year by more than 200, which was the highest rise in the whole ranking. In fact, as of recent years, Ilmarinen has carried out systematic work to take climate change into account.
Last year, Ilmarinen adopted a Climate Policy to steer investment operations, which sets concrete goals for the near future. In addition to building up the company’s portfolio of sustainable development investments, another goal is to reduce the carbon footprint of real estate investments and grow the share of renewable energy. In the long run, the objective is for the investment portfolio to be in line with the Paris Agreement’s two-degree target. Furthermore, as an active owner, Ilmarinen seeks to engage in its investee companies, urging them to report more comprehensively on their climate impacts.
At the beginning of 2017, Ilmarinen took into use sustainable investment benchmark indices through which it wishes to encourage its portfolio managers to focus even more strongly on responsible companies in their investment decisions.
– We are delighted that Ilmarinen’s comprehensive efforts to take climate change into account have received global recognition. We truly believe that taking climate change into account in investment operations is a strategic and responsible choice that will, in the long run, guarantee the best return for Finnish pensioners, stresses Mursula.
Climate awareness rising among investors
The Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP) is a global, not-for-profit organisation whose objective is to protect asset owners from the risks posed by climate change. The organisation promotes the reporting of carbon risks and highlights best practices. The annually published Climate Index compiles data on the world’s 500 biggest asset owners. It includes pension funds, insurance companies and foundations.
According to AODP, 60 percent of the biggest asset owners now recognise the financial risks of climate change and are taking action, an 18% increase since last year. The most progressive countries are Sweden, Norway, New Zealand and Finland. Finland’s country performance rose also clearly, last year Finland did not fit in the top ten.
Mikko Mursula, CIO, tel. +358 50 380 3016
Tiina Landau, Senior Advisor, Responsible Investments, tel. +358 45 671 1286