Aldi's plastic-free tea and a £61.5bn net-zero pension pledge: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
UK's National Infrastructure Bank launches, with tackling climate change as key objective
The UK's National Infrastructure Bank (NIB) is launching in Leeds today (17 June), with Chancellor Rishi Sunak promising that it will funnel billions of pounds into the UK's net-zero transition.
Green finance tools and net-zero sector coalitions: CEOs present climate initiatives to world leaders at G7
EY, HSBC and Heathrow Airport are among the 300 businesses presenting three new solutions to help the private sector play its role in tackling the climate crisis to G7 leaders on Friday (11 June).
UK Government launches new taskforce to tackle greenwashing in finance sector
The UK Government is set to launch a new advisory group tasked with creating a 'green taxonomy' for finance, in a bid to crack down on greenwashing in the investment space.
Bank of England's 'fiendishly complicated' climate stress tests launched for financial sector
The Bank of England has released new information on the requirements of its upcoming climate stress tests, which will require large banks and insurers to measure and disclose climate-related risks.
Can the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures solve the global ecological crisis?
The Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures (TNFD) officially launched on Friday (4 June) with an overarching aim to align corporate reporting and financial spending to alleviate nature-related risks. Here, edie explores whether the new initiative can generate enough momentum to deliver tangible change.
Kingfisher enters £550m sustainability and community-linked loan
Screwfix and B&Q's parent firm Kingfisher has signed for a £550m revolving credit facility agreement (RCF) with interest rates linked to environmental and community targets.
Kingspan signs for €700m sustainability-linked loan
Building materials and design giant Kingspan has signed for a new €700m revolving credit facility with interest rates linked to environmental targets.
Give us sector-specific guidance on net-zero transition, investment giants tell G7 nations
A group of investors with £8.5trn of assets under management has called on G7 nations to introduce new climate disclosure and action mandates for big businesses - and to provide more detail on how their long-term climate goals will be delivered.
Green Finance Institute chair Sir Roger Gifford passes away
Green Finance Institute chair and senior banker for Skandinaviska Ennskilda Banken (SEB), Sir Roger Gifford, has passed away aged 65.
'Concerning for shareholders': World's biggest insurers failing to tackle ESG risks
A new ranking of the world's 70 largest insurance firms has found that none exclude companies driving biodiversity loss and just 13% exclude firms knowingly in breach of human and labour rights requirements.
WWF: UK banks and investors financing projects with double nation's climate impact
UK banks and asset managers collectively financed projects emitting 805 million tonnes of greenhouse gases in 2019 - around twice the UK's annual national carbon footprint.
Taking place today: Last chance to register for edie's flagship Countdown to COP26 event
The UK Cabinet Office's director of partnerships and engagement Matt Toombs has joined the likes of WBCSD director Claire O'Neill and O2's head of corporate responsibility and sustainability Tracey Herald among the headline speakers at edie's Countdown to COP26 virtual event Thursday (20 May).
Survey: Sustainability prioritised by less than one-third of UK bank boardrooms
In a survey of 300 executives at some of Europe's biggest banks, less than one-third of UK respondents said their business is framing sustainability and a board-level priority.
UK climbs energy investment rankings, but concerns persist over green finance availability
The UK has climbed one position to fourth in the rankings for EY's national attractiveness of renewable energy investment, but the organisation has warned that global green finance efforts need to improve considerably to meet clean energy demand for existing climate commitments.
Ikea and BrewDog among backers of new green pensions commitment
A string of 50 major businesses, NGOs and trade bodies have pledged to ensure their pension plans are 'green' this year, and are urging others to follow suit.
Amazon launches inaugural sustainability bond, priced at $1bn
E-commerce giant Amazon has issued a $1bn sustainability-focussed bond, with funds raised set to assist the delivery of the firm's low-carbon and social sustainability targets.
Road to net-zero: UK business giants team up to accelerate investment in low-carbon transport
Uber and Lloyds Banking Group are among the founding members of a new business coalition working to unlock investment into low-carbon road transport systems.
#SustyTalk: Counting down to COP26 with green finance expert Sir Roger Gifford
With COP26 less than six months away, edie has launched a new series of videos with high-level speakers, designed to inspire and empower your preparations for the conference. First up, Green Finance Institute chair Sir Roger Gifford.
Report: Just 6% of UK's tax revenue is 'green'
The share of UK tax revenue directly raised from supporting businesses and individuals to reduce their environmental footprint was just 6% in 2020, new analysis has revealed, as the Treasury faces mounting pressure to align with net-zero.
The Body Shop owner raises $1bn for first sustainability bond
Natura & Co, the parent company of the Body Shop and Avon, has issued what it claims is Latin America's largest sustainability bond to date, priced at $1bn.
CDP: Three-quarters of finance giants not disclosing climate impacts of portfolios
The average finance firm’s financed emissions will be 700 times higher than those of their direct operations- but just one in four companies are measuring and disclosing them.
MPs accuse Treasury and HMRC of shirking climate responsibilities
The Treasury and HMRC are failing to respond to a "climate storm breaking all around us", failing to make the necessary changes to tax systems and short-term funding packages needed for the 'just' transition to net-zero.
Treasury could mandate UK financial firms to add climate labels to products
HM Treasury has today (22 April) published the results of its two-year review on how the financial system must change to support the net-zero transition, recommending changes to tackle greenwash, empower consumers and properly prepare government departments for future costs.
Ditch fossil fuel finance, $11trn investor coalition tells big banks
A coalition of 35 major investors with $11trn of assets under management collectively are calling on banks to "enhance" their climate targets, backing up long-term visions with action in the short-term.
JP Morgan Chase pledges $2.5trn to climate and sustainability this decade
US-based finance giant JP Morgan Chase has unveiled plans to provide more than $2.5trn of finance to sustainable development projects by the end of 2030.
CISL calls for standardised climate disclosure framework for investors
While most investors are measuring and disclosing their climate performance, it is hard to compare progress between companies because there is not a universal framework. This makes it more challenging for investors to be held to account or to accelerate progress.
Additional $600m for low-carbon solutions as BlackRock forms new investment partnership
The world's largest investor, BlackRock, has forged a new partnership with Singapore-based Temasek to scale up investment in low-carbon technologies.
Three ESG lessons from Covid-19 for the climate crisis
None of us coming out of the Covid-19 pandemic unchanged. The crisis has forced everybody to respond to new challenges and, largely, we have adapted well - parish council and cat filtered lawyer zoom calls notwithstanding.
Report: Investors ditching fossil fuel stocks as value drops by billions of dollars
The value of share offerings in fossil fuel firms has plummeted by $123bn since 2012, a new report has revealed.
Countdown to COP26: edie launches bumper virtual event ahead of climate talks
Registration is now open for a brand-new edie event which aims to help businesses seize the opportunity of the UN's COP26 climate summit later this year, with a stellar speaker line-up including senior representatives from BEIS, ClientEarth, Green Alliance, We Mean Business and the High-Level Champions for Climate Action.
Government ponders mandatory TCFD requirements for businesses in 2022
The Government is considering creating a legal requirement for private UK companies to outline and disclose climate-related risks to their business in line with Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) recommendations, with a mandate potentially coming into force next year.
Northern Gas Networks launches green bond to support hydrogen transition
Northern Gas Networks has launched its first green bond, in a bid to raise capital to prepare for hydrogen heating. The move comes as Hitachi Capital UK prices its own debut green bond at $40m.
#SustyTalk: Thai Union's Darian McBain on sustainable corporate finance
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with an exclusive discussion with Thai Union's global director of corporate affairs and sustainability Darian McBain.
Is biodiversity being forgotten in sustainable corporate finance?
EXCLUSIVE: The issuance of sustainability bonds and sustainability-linked loans in the private sector is gathering pace, but are businesses using them to help avert the nature crisis?
Retrofit revolution can cut emissions and deliver £7.5bn energy savings for UK
Retrofitting the UK's building stock with low-carbon solutions could reduce national energy costs by £7.5bn a year, create more than 150,000 jobs over a 10-year period and cut carbon emissions by 20%, MPs have been told.
Brunel Pensions Partnership targets net-zero as Nest accelerates renewable energy investment
The UK's largest Government-backed pension scheme, Nest, has pledged £250m to renewable energy projects this year, while Brunel Pension Partnership has outlined a new net-zero target.
What does the EU Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR) mean for corporates?
2021 is set to be a momentous year in terms of funds regulation as Sustainable Finance Disclosures Regulation (SFDR) comes into place. The SFDR forms part of the EU's Action Plan on Sustainable Finance, with the goal of eliminating greenwash and emphasizing the impact that asset managers' investments have, particularly in relation to climate change.
Big Issue launches climate solutions fund as CaixaBank issues €1bn SDG green bond
The Big Issue Group (TBIG) has partnered with Aberdeen Standard Investments to create a new climate solutions investment fund, while Spanish retail bank CaixaBank has issued a €1bn green bond in alignment with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).
Major investors apply net-zero alignment framework to $8trn of assets
A coalition of 35 big-name investors has become the first to apply a new net-zero investment framework to their portfolios, with $8trn of assets covered.
'Climate conflict': 4 in 5 UK bank directors have connections to high-emitting corporates
An analysis of the activities of directors at the UK's biggest banks has revealed that almost 80% have close ties to corporates in industries linked to climate change and pollution - which could undermine their net-zero commitments.
Anthesis targets three gigatons of carbon mitigation and removal by 2030
Impact investor and consulting firm Anthesis is aiming to support projects that collectively avoid, reduce and remove three billion tonnes (three gigatons) of carbon by the end of the decade.
Daimler prices €1bn green bond to help finance EV transition
Mercedes-Benz's parent company Daimler has priced its second major green bond at €1.02bn, with funds set to be spent on delivering its climate and electric vehicle (EV) targets.
Mastercard issues $600m sustainability bond to help finance net-zero transition
Mastercard has issued a $600m sustainability bond and is planning to use proceeds to further its alignment with the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and deliver its 2050 net-zero pledge.
Green growth or greenwashing? Business leaders react to Rishi Sunak's 2021 Budget
After Chancellor Rishi Sunak opened his red Budget box to provide more detail on green bonds and net-zero innovation finance, there has been a mixed reaction from green economy leaders - as edie summarises in this article.
Budget 2021: Rishi Sunak 'set to unveil green savings bonds and net-zero innovation programmes'
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has confirmed that he will launch green savings bonds at the Budget on Wednesday. There are also media reports of a £1bn portfolio to support innovations that will accelerate the UK's net-zero transition.
BlackRock Investment Institute: Tackling climate change will provide a financial boost, not a net cost
BlackRock's insights arm is forecasting that the net-zero transition could create a cumulative output gain of almost 25% by 2040, if delivered in an "orderly" fashion.
Meet edie's 30 Under 30 Class of 2020: Natalie Orde, Grosvenor Europe
This new series profiles the members of edie's 30 Under 30 - a nomination-based community of 30 hugely talented young sustainability and energy professionals who have already achieved great things or are showing fantastic promise. Up next: Grosvenor Europe's sustainability manager Natalie Orde.
As Trinity College Cambridge divests, UK council pensions still hold £10bn in fossil fuels
Freedom of information requests by environmental campaigners have revealed that UK local government pensions held almost £10bn in fossil fuel companies last year, despite the trend towards climate emergency declarations.
H&M Group issues €500m sustainability bond
Fashion giant H&M Group has launched a bond that will finance initiatives to reduce emissions and improve resource efficiency, priced at €500m.
AB InBev announces $10.1bn sustainability-linked loan
The world's largest brewer has announced what it claims is the world's largest corporate sustainability-linked loan to date, priced at $10.1bn.
Thai Union launches its first sustainability-linked loan package, priced at $400m
The world's largest seafood firm, Thai Union, has announced a new $400m loan package with interest payments linked to climate, sustainability and due diligence targets.
BlackRock presses energy companies to set 'rigorous' emissions targets
The world's largest investor, BlackRock, has urged energy firms and other high emitters to disclose the full extent of their emissions and set climate targets in line with science. It is warning that failure to do so could result in stranded assets.
Leeds and London to host new green finance research hubs
A new government-backed body dedicated to green finance research is set to launch in April, with physical "hubs" in Leeds and London.
Goldman Sachs issues first sustainability bond, priced at $800m
US-based finance giant Goldman Sachs has issued its inaugural sustainability bond, priced at $800m, as it strives to mobilise $750bn in green finance by 2030.
Bank of America targets net-zero financed emissions and supply chains by 2050
After being accused by investors and green groups of continuing to finance high-carbon projects, Bank of America has pledged to reach net-zero emissions across the projects it finances and its supply chain by 2050.
Defra unveils £10m fund for nature-based climate solutions
The Government has unveiled a new £10m fund to support nature-based projects that combat the climate crisis, in the same week that Oxford University launched a new venture studio designed to uncover similar solutions.
Green groups call for assurances over National Infrastructure Bank
A host of green groups have written to the Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, urging for the implementation of a UK National Infrastructure Bank (NIB) to de-risk private investment into low-carbon solutions.
Green pensions: Scottish Widows charts pathway to net-zero financed emissions
Pensions and insurance giant Scottish Widows, which manages funds totalling £170bn, has committed to halving financed emissions by 2030 on the pathway to net-zero.
Business giants' climate disclosure 'clearly inadequate', lawyers warn
Lawyers have warned that the majority of FTSE 100 and the largest companies on the FTSE 250 are failing to disclose adequate climate-related data as part of annual corporate reporting frameworks, with some potentially breaching UK law.
Whitbread issues green bonds totalling £550m
Hospitality giant Whitbread, which owns brands including Premier Inn, has priced two major green bonds at £300m and £250m respectively.
Finance and policy: The external drivers forcing businesses to take climate action
Sustainability professionals have often found frustration when trying to embed CSR across an entire organisation, but the mainstreaming of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investing looks set to create new momentum behind the green recovery.
Bank of England's high-carbon financing a 'moral hazard', MPs warn
The Bank of England risks creating 'moral hazard' by continuing to finance high-carbon projects and companies and providing no-strings-attached financing to carbon intensives companies, the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) has warned.
What makes a sustainability leader? Meet CBRE Global Investors
With less than two weeks until the 2021 Sustainability Leaders Awards, this feature series showcases the achievements of the 2020 winners and reveals their secrets to success. Up next: The winners of the Investor of the Year Award, CBRE Global Investors.
Tesco's first sustainability-linked bond more than six times oversubscribed
Tesco attracted more than Є5bn of investor demand for its first sustainability-linked bond (SLB), priced at Є750m, according to official advisor BNP Paribas.
Orchard Street targets net-zero across £4bn portfolio of buildings
Commercial property investment manager Orchard Street, which manages retail units, offices and industrial facilities worth more than £4bn, has outlined plans to reach net-zero ahead of the UK government's 2050 deadline.
Report: Major asset managers still voting against tougher climate measures
In the same week that BlackRock was widely criticised for continuing to hold $85bn in coal, an analysis of the world's 30 largest fund managers has found that the global sector is failing to translate high-level climate commitments into investment decisions and support for shareholder resolutions.
TSB and Aviva Investors plot pathway to net-zero carbon
Major retail bank TSB has unveiled its plans to reach net-zero by 2030, after cutting operational emissions by 66% during 2020. At the same time, Aviva Investors has revealed its plans to decarbonise its real assets portfolio.
Governments urged to redirect $1trn of 'planet-wrecking' subsidies to nature conservation and restoration
Governments collectively funnel more than $1trn of subsidies into businesses that harm nature, including fossil fuel majors, mining giants and industrial agriculture, every year.
Banks 'have provided $1.7trn of unconditional support to plastic polluters since 2015'
Global banks have been accused of collectively providing more than $1.7trn to businesses across the plastics value chain between 2015 and 2019, largely without attaching environmental conditions to support packages.
CDL secures $740m green loan for property portfolio
Real estate company City Developments Limited (CDL) has confirmed a new green revolving credit facility totalling $470m that will be used to refinance it's the Republic Plaza commercial property and future low-carbon projects.
21 New Year's resolutions for sustainability professionals in 2021 and beyond
At last, 2020 has drawn to a close and while the first parts of a new year might not create a respite from a global pandemic and an economic crash, it does create the ideal opportunity to look at the climate crisis with a reinvigorated approach.
Banks pressured to divest from fossil fuels and deforesters ahead of COP26
MPs, trade bodies and the UN's Environment Programme are urging banks to unify their response to the net-zero transition ahead of COP26 next November and commit to time-bound phase-outs for fossil fuel finance.
Lloyds of London finally agrees to divest from coal
Insurance giant Lloyds of London has promised to end investment in coal, oil sands and fossil fuel exploration in the Arctic, following years a pressure from climate campaigners.
Science-based targets and renewable energy investments: Credit Suisse and Nest unveil first steps towards net-zero
Swiss investment bank Credit Suisse has unveiled a string of new climate measures, in the same week that the UK's largest pension scheme, Nest, outlined steps to help it meet its net-zero goal.
#SustyTalk: PepsiCo's Jim Andrew on green bonds and inclusive business
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with an exclusive interview with PepsiCo's chief sustainability officer Jim Andrew, who stepped into the role earlier this year.
Legal & General to halve emissions of £81bn pension portfolio by 2030
Legal & General's Retirement arm has pledged to halve the carbon emission intensity of its annuity book, which totals almost £81bn, within a decade.
BlackRock debuts software that assesses climate risk for investors
Investment giant BlackRock has unveiled new software to help investors quantify climate risk and low-carbon opportunities relating to their portfolios.
Green Finance Institute: UK's new National Investment Bank must go beyond energy
The UK's new National Investment Bank (NIB) must have strong net-zero criteria and support the low-carbon transition in the transport, built environment and nature sector as well as energy, the Green Finance Institute (GFI) is urging.
Net-zero pensions 'could deliver £1trn for UK's green recovery'
By re-allocating a proportion of state pensions to low-carbon energy and transport, and giving seniors access to these sectors for free, the UK Government could unlock £1trn for the net-zero transition.
Boris Johnson unveils £12bn Ten Point Plan for net-zero transition
Clean hydrogen, carbon capture and storage (CCS), zero-carbon transport and offshore wind are all key pillars of Boris Johnson's Ten Point Plan to push the UK towards net-zero emissions, which will be backed by £12bn in Government investment and aim to create 250,000 new green jobs.
European Investment Bank unveils £1trn green investment plan through 2030
EU member states have approved the European Investment Bank's (EIB) plans to spend €1trn on the green economy within a decade and to ban funding for fossil fuel projects and airport expansions.
#SustyTalk: Global Returns Project's Yan Swiderski on the next generation of climate finance
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with the Global Returns Project's co-founder Yan Swiderski discussing how the finance sector is responding to climate change.
Chancellor Rishi Sunak confirms UK's first sovereign green bond, mandatory TCFD disclosures
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak has made a string of major announcements on green finance, confirming that the UK will issue its first green gilts in 2021 and will introduce new climate disclosure requirements.
Scottish Widows to divest £440m from companies lagging on environmental and social sustainability
Pensions provider Scottish Widows has outlined plans to divest at least £440m from companies that have failed to meet its ESG standards, in what is claims is the most far-reaching exclusions process in the sector.
EU bank mulls ban on cash for airport expansions
The European Investment Bank (EIB) could withdraw support for new airports, according to a draft climate roadmap seen by EURACTIV. However, the bank is set to keep funding motorways, as well as approving investments under the old rules until 2022.
Survey: Greenwashing 'is the biggest challenge to sustainable investment'
A survey of 650 institutional investors with more than $25.9trn in assets under management globally has found that investor-corporate engagement on environmental issues is growing - but so is frustration over greenwash.
#SustyTalk: Mastercard's Kristina Kloberdanz on collaborating and communicating for sustainability
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with Mastercard’s chief sustainability officer Kristina Kloberdanz discussing the company's collaborative work on issues like plastics pollution, deforestation and financial empowerment.
TCFD gains 500 global supporters amid Covid-19, but full alignment remains rare
The Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) has revealed that more than 500 organisations have pledged support for its recommendations since February, but that reporting remains inconsistent.
Priceless Planet: Banks and airlines join coalition planting 100 million trees
Businesses including Barclays Bank US, HSBC and Frontier Airlines have joined the Priceless Planet Coalition - an initiative set up by MasterCard to reforest more than 100 million trees.
Investors worth $8.5trn call for mandatory climate risk reporting for big businesses
Climate risk reporting should be made mandatory for the UK's biggest publicly listed businesses, an influential group of investors has told Ministers and regulators.
Survey: One in five British investors turning to impact investment amid Covid-19
More than one-fifth (22%) of UK-based investors are planning to invest in dedicated ethical funds in the near future, with the proportion rising to more than one-third (35%) among those aged 35 and under.
New initiative to help investors funnel $10bn into climate solutions annually
By allocating just 0.25% of their savings and investments to fund not-for-profit projects aiding climate adaptation and mitigation, individual investors could collectively funnel $10bn per year into this space by 2030, a pair of ex-financiers have claimed.
City of London Corporation targets net-zero by 2040
The City of London Corporation has committed to reaching net-zero across its investments and supply chain by 2040, with an interim ambition to generate net-zero operational emissions by 2027.
Issue green sovereign bond to finance UK's Covid-19 recovery, investors urge Government
A group of 30 major investors with more than £10trn of assets under management collectively are calling for the UK Government to launch a green sovereign bond to ensure adequate funding is put behind its mission to deliver a "green" Covid-19 recovery.
BNEF: Green bond issuance broke records in September 2020
More than $50bn of green bonds were issued globally in September, making it a record month despite the economic impact of Covid-19, BloombergNEF has revealed.
Aviva sets 2050 net-zero target for pensions, urges Government to force others to follow suit
Aviva has committed to ensuring that companies held in its auto-enrolment default pension funds generate net-zero emissions by 2050 - and urged the Government to make this a unified commitment across the sector.
Science-based targets for financial sector unveiled
Banks, investors and insurance firms will now be able to verify that their climate targets are Paris-Agreement-aligned through the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi).
Credit Suisse raises $212m for 'world's first' ocean health impact fund
Swiss investment bank Credit Suisse has partnered with Rockefeller Asset Management to launch an impact fund that will finance projects improving ocean health, raising $212m pre-launch.
Chanel links €600m sustainability bond to science-based targets
Luxury fashion and fragrance giant Chanel has issued a €600m transaction for bonds linked to the company's progress against its 1.5C science-based targets.