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Senators launch clean investment friendship group

By Keith Ford
3 minute read

Federal senators Andrew Bragg, Karen Grogan, and David Pocock have launched the Parliamentary Friends of Clean Investment group.

Launched at Parliament House, the group consists of the Investor Group on Climate Change (IGCC) and the Financial Services Council (FSC), and is chaired by Mr Bragg, Ms Grogan, and Mr Pocock.

The aim of the group is to provide a non-partisan forum for MPs to engage with institutional investors and companies that are accelerating the transition to net zero, identify legislative and regulatory opportunities to accelerate investment in cleaner technology and infrastructure, develop a greater understanding of the role of capital in accelerating the energy transition, and host events that showcase net zero investment opportunities.

“Net zero is a very important economic objective for Australia. Zero is zero, but it is net zero which is the goal,” Mr Bragg said.

“There will still be emissions from things like cement production and farming. These will be offset and Australia has unique advantages given our enormous land mass.”

Ms Grogan added that the group's aim is to celebrate and foster investment in clean technology and infrastructure.

“I am proud to work alongside my colleagues with the aim of showcasing net zero investment opportunities and driving the positive change that Australia urgently needs,” she said.

According to Mr Pocock, the group will help build links between MPs and those in the financial sector driving positive change.

“Significant investment will be needed for us to seize the opportunities the energy transition presents to Australia,” he said.

Rebecca Mikula-Wright, the chief executive of the IGCC, said that investors welcome the launch and the opportunity to engage in “important non-partisan conversations” about the role of finance in accelerating Australia’s orderly transition to a clean economy.

“Climate change is both a systemic financial risk that must be addressed and an incredible economic opportunity for Australia to seize,” she said.

Moreover, CEO of the FSC, Blake Briggs, added that the purpose of the group was to increase awareness of the role of the finance industry in driving sustainable outcomes.

“It is great to see support for this group from all sides of the political spectrum who understand what the investment community needs to deliver on their responsibility to effectively manage climate-related financial risk in their investment portfolios,” Mr Briggs said.

“This enables investors to safeguard the savings of millions of Australians. Australia’s commitment to net zero emissions by 2050 will need to be financed largely by the private sector, which is why stable policy settings are required to transition Australia to a lower emissions economy.

“This group will champion issues such as the need for a mandatory climate change disclosure regime and the role of the investment community in financing sustainable economic investments and solutions.”