US - CalPERS and CalSTRS have called on utilities companies to disclose environmental data to allow investors to assess their holding's true value and associated risks.
The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) - whose combined assets exceed US$380bn – drew up the Electric Utitlities Report.
This was based on responses from 112 of 265 global power companies surveyed by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), a venture by 225 institutional investors with US$31.5trn under management.
The study revealed the true cost of assets in utilities companies was less than expected after the environmental costs were taken into account.
It showed few of the companies surveyed generated overall economic value, after accounting for the environmental damage caused by their carbon emissions.
The pension funds said that for the first time, investors were shown the net contribution of an industry on a company-by-company basis by factoring in their environmental damage.
CalPERS CIO Russell Read said: “This study shows investors that the true value of utilities is considerably less once the utilities’ environmental costs have been incorporated into the analysis.
“It is imperative for utilities to disclose the environmental data required by investors so they can more accurately assess a firm’s true value and associated risk.”
The report further revealed that none of the 32 companies in China had disclosed any environmental information, a fact it described as disconcerting, considering China was responsible for for a large and growing proportion of global carbon emissions.
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