Major UK asset owners including the BT pension scheme have called on the government to take increased climate action to protect investments and beneficiaries.
In two letters addressed to prime minister Boris Johnson and the secretary of transport Grant Shapps, the asset owners highlighted that climate change is recognised as the most significant global risk facing investors.
“It threatens their livelihoods, their retirement savings, their health, their quality of life. Even a short delay in implementing the necessary policies increases the likelihood of a disorderly transition, threatening beneficiaries’ savings and the resilience of the financial system,” they stated.
They said that the UK is in a unique position to mobilise climate ambition at a global level, stating that “now is the time” to leverage the City of London and private finance to help deliver decarbonisation.
The asset owners requested to meet with Johnson ahead of the upcoming COP26 meeting of world leaders to discuss how to work together in order to deliver on climate targets.
Fiona Reynolds, chief executive officer of investor network Principles for Responsible Investment and co-signatory of the letters, said: “To achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement and prevent the most destabilising effects of climate change, we need not only greener portfolios but greener, decarbonised economies.
“The government and the investment community must work together to deliver that decarbonisation. We applaud the leadership the UK government has shown so far, but know that so much more must still be done.”
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