The world’s largest global investors are urging the U.S. and other global policy makers to take strong action in the fight against global warming. In the midst of Congressional debate on climate legislation and the upcoming climate change talks in Copenhagen, global investors issued a policy statement calling for a binding international treaty that will reduce pollution and drive significant global investments in low-carbon technologies, reports Ceres, a leading coalition of investors and environmental groups.
Many investors, as well as other stakeholders, say the outcome of climate talks in December depends heavily on decisions made by the U.S. Congress on climate and energy legislation. The House passed a comprehensive bill in June and the Senate will consider a similar bill in the upcoming weeks.
Investors released the statement at an all-day International Investor Forum on Climate Change hosted by New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. The policy statement was signed by 181 investors, who collectively manage more than $13 trillion in assets.
According to their statement, these investors are requesting specific elements to be included in the global climate change treaty. These include a global target for emission reductions of 50 to 85 percent by 2050 (1990 baseline), and developed country emission reduction targets of 80 to 95 percent by 2050 with interim targets of 25 to 40 percent by 2020 backed up by effective national action plans.
The group also wants action plans for developing countries that deliver measurable and verifiable emission reductions, government support for energy efficient and low-carbon technology, measures to reduce deforestation and promote afforestation, and adaptation support for unavoidable climate change impacts.
In addition, they are calling for measures that support the move to an effective global carbon market, including fair and efficient allocation of allowances and links between different trading schemes, revisions to the Clean Development Mechanism to ensure real, permanent and verifiable emission reductions, and public financing mechanisms that leverage private sector finance for investment in developing countries.
This is not the first time that global investors have come together this year to drive the need for new climate change rules. In June, the investor community made another attempt to push the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to improve disclosure of climate change risks by companies.
As a growing number of companies rely on voluntary greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reporting to meet their internal environmental goals, The Climate Registry, a standards-setting organization for GHG emissions reporting in North America, has plans to develop its next-generation of online emissions reporting system, which will support both voluntary and mandatory reporting. The new technology will be developed through a new technical partnership with Misys Open Source Solutions, a division of Misys plc.
The new version of The Climate Registry system is due for release in early 2010.
The Climate Registry currently supports voluntary emissions reporting for over 340 businesses, organizations, academic institutions, local governments and government agencies and also supports mandatory emissions reporting programs.