CANADA - Canadian institutions have yet to take any meaningful action on the growing risks posed by climate change, despite their growing awareness, the Carbon Disclosure Project's (CDP4) Canada 280 report has found.
A massive 82% of respondents failed to address the financial significance of climate change to their operations, while only a third (36%) said they had a greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction plan and even fewer (20%) had a reduction target with a timeline.
Forward-looking financial and strategic information was largely absent from companies’ CDP4 responses, said David Greenall, principal research associate at the Conference Board of Canada, which released the report's findings
“Large investors should be concerned about this gap between awareness and action,” he said. “Respondents cited regulatory uncertainty as a major barrier to developing more comprehensive strategies and assessing the potential financial impact of climate change."
Greenall said corporate disclosure would benefit from clear government policy on climate change, which was backed up by the report's findings that 25% of all respondents - rising to 40% for those in emissions-intensive sectors - cited regulatory uncertainty in the first Kyoto commitment phase as the major barrier to estimating the potential cost of reducing emissions.
The CDP represents 225 global investors with more than $31.5trn in assets, including more than $1trn by Canadian-based investors.
The CDP4 Canada 280 report was financially supported by Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.
In other news, Fortis Investments has set up a dedicated specialist SRI investment centre in Frankfurt as it hope to tap the "strong market potential" for SRI in Germany.
As part of the initiative, Stewart Armer, product CIO, has moved from Paris to Frankfurt, together with an international team of colleagues from Germany, Bulgaria and France. The team of four is expected to expand to eight to ten people during 2007.
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