Weekly column by Barbara Hirsch
Bits of good news are seeping, no bubbling out from the corporate sector regarding sustainability. At the World Resources Forum a couple months ago, one of the bits that really stuck for me was from a conversation involving an extremely impressive fellow who is a business consultant in that realm as well as an academic in the sciences. I believe Unilever was one of his clients. He said that much more was going on among the major corporations with their work in sustainability than meets the eye, partially because shareholders didn’t want to see it. Well maybe now they are wanting to.
CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project) is a global nonprofit whose purpose is to “transform the way the world does business”, and to work with institutional investors (their clients hold $87 trillion in assets) to “reveal the risk in their investment portfolios.” “As countries around the world seek economic growth, strong employment and safe environments, corporations have a unique responsibility to deliver that growth in a way that use natural resources wisely. The opportunity is enormous and it is the only growth worth having.” Their 2013 report (PDF) on Climate Change and the Global 500 proves that carbon pricing is becoming part of corporate planning.
Fossil fuel divestment has become a serious issue among college campuses, cities and others large institutional investors, such as CalPERS.
Here, in Forbes magazine, (FORBES, mind you): Fossil fuels investments are increasingly risky.