The multinational asset manager has decided to drop investments in thermal coal, oil sands and Arctic drilling from all of its mutual funds.
Companies that derive 25 per cent of more of their revenue from thermal coal or oil sands or 10 per cent or more from Arctic drilling, will be barred from Robeco’s investment portfolios.
The move has expanded the thermal coal exclusion policy that already applied to Robeco’s sustainable and impact strategies, and has now encompassed companies engaged in oil sands and Arctic drilling.
The exclusion applies to all of Robeco’s mutual funds, excluding client-specific funds and mandates, but including sub-advised funds.
Robeco stated it had decided to exclude thermal coal investments, citing it as the highest carbon-emitting source of energy in the global fuel mix.
It has also signalled a preference to divest rather than engage with the affected companies and sectors, as it believes the effort would not lead to change.
The process of excluding fossil fuel companies is expected to finish by the end of the year.
Victor Verbek, chief investment officer of fixed income and sustainability at Robeco said a focus on sustainability will improve asset managers.
“Our move to exclude investments in fossil fuels from our funds is a further step in our efforts to lower the carbon footprint of our investments, transitioning to a lower-carbon economy,” Mr Verbek said.
Robeco has committed to follow the Paris Agreement, which Mr Verbek noted will require “substantial reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions over the next few decades”.
Sarah Simpkins is a journalist at Momentum Media, reporting primarily on banking, financial services and wealth.
Prior to joining the team in 2018, Sarah worked in trade media and produced stories for a current affairs program on community radio.
You can contact her on [email protected].
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