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ShareAction to strengthen focus on climate risk with takeover of the Asset Owners Disclosure Project

ShareAction and AODP today announce an agreement for ShareAction to take over the reins of the Asset Owners Disclosure Project (AODP).

After 10 years of ranking the climate-related financial disclosures of the world’s largest pension funds, insurers, sovereign wealth funds and endowments, AODP is handing the project over to ShareAction, whose programme to drive responsible practices into the heart of the global investment system has always been closely aligned with both the goals and methods of AODP.

Catherine Howarth, Chief Executive of ShareAction, said: “ShareAction is hugely excited to be taking over the pioneering work of AODP at this key moment for global action on climate change. With many large investors already disclosing using the AODP framework, the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures have already, effectively, been adopted by market leaders. We now need the G20 members and associated institutions to drive disclosure in their own countries, and to move swiftly towards a globally consistent and mandatory disclosure platform.”

Julian Poulter, CEO of AODP, said “The board of AODP are immensely proud of our achievements over the last decade and we are now delighted to be consolidating our work into ShareAction at a critical juncture for climate disclosure. The responsible investment movement has already shifted billions of dollars away from high carbon investments and changed investors’ and regulators’ perspective on climate change from the ideological or partisan to one of risk management and long-term benefit calculations.”

As the low-carbon transition accelerates, there is an increasing need to scrutinise and hold large investors accountable for the quality of their decision-making on behalf of beneficiaries. As independent actors in civil society, ShareAction and AODP have acted to fill this vital gap over the last decade. “We thank AODP for their contribution to this effort, and wish Julian every success as he pursues new challenges,” Howarth continues.

Institutional investors are responsible for managing and safeguarding the assets of billions of savers globally. Asset owners sit at the top of the capital food chain and have a long-term view of systemic risks like climate change that governments and other financial market participants struggle with. The actions of leading asset owners could steer the global economy into a safe and speedy low-carbon transition that will protect portfolios, people and economies. AODP has been a pioneer in putting the spotlight on investors’ management of climate risks and associated capital allocation decisions.

The most recent published AODP ranking in April shows positive signs that asset owners are beginning to act to address portfolio climate risks.

Absorbing AODP is part of ShareAction’s strategy to broaden its remit globally, and is a natural next step after the launch in Berlin last June of the European Responsible Investment Network. This global vantage point, leveraging AODP’s strong US and Australian presence, will enhance ShareAction’s capacity to champion responsible investment at a time when more asset managers are realising the relevance of climate change risk to long-term value for the millions of citizen investors they serve.

Notes for editors:

  • For more information, please contact Beau O’Sullivan at osullivan@shareaction.org or 0203 475 7859
  • This press release is jointly published on the ShareAction website here.
  • ShareAction is an organisation with a mission to transform capital markets into a greater force for public good. Our vision is of a responsible investment system that truly serves savers, communities, and protects our environment for the long term.
  • The Asset Owners Disclosure Project is an independent not-for-profit global organisation whose objective is to protect asset owners from the risks posed by climate change.It does this by working with pension funds, insurance companies, sovereign wealth funds, foundations and universities to improve the level of disclosure and industry best practice.

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Published on: 13th June 2017

Filed Under: News

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