We face interlinked environmental crises, from climate breakdown, extreme weather, and species loss to water scarcity and unsustainable food production. We take action in our operations, but our greatest impact and influence is through how we invest our customers’ and clients’ money.
We aim to lead by example, striving for the same high standards that we expect from investee companies. We are fully supportive of the goals of the Paris Agreement and are members of the Net Zero Asset Managers initiative, committed to decarbonisation to support the journey to net zero with real world impact.
We have always tackled the material aspects of our footprint first – historically, this has been energy use in our offices and business travel. However, as the nature of work has changed and working from home more is likely to be a lasting feature, we have incorporated these emissions into our footprint and into our reduction target.
In 2018 we set a new baseline for our operational greenhouse gas emissions after a period of structural change. In 2021 we stated our ambitious carbon commitments. We first reduce as much as we can and then we offset 110% of our residual emissions with accredited projects. This includes our working from home emissions. We also want to work with suppliers that are supportive of our aims.
We are supportive of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) recommendations, encourage companies to report aligned to the guidance and published our report of our approach across our operations and investments.
We know that enabling our clients to be better investors and achieve their climate goals has the biggest role to play in encouraging a transition to a net zero economy
This is why we have set a target to reduce the carbon intensity of the assets we invest in by 50% by 2030 vs a 2019 baseline to support the transition to net zero.
To deliver on this, we believe in real world decarbonisation. Decarbonising portfolios (divesting or avoiding carbon intensive assets) may be quicker but is likely to move the carbon problem to someone else with little impact on the real world transition to net zero. To achieve this, we focus on investing in transition leaders, climate solutions and engagement with corporates to influence their ambitions and actions.
Through the substantial real estate assets we manage, we have a significant opportunity to drive sustainability benefits for wider society. We have set out a number of climate-related targets:
|Achieve net zero emissions in our global managed investment real estate by 2050.
||Our progress is detailed in our annual update report
|In our UK managed investment Real Estate, where we have procurement responsibility, we use 100% renewable electricity
||Achieved since 2019|
We are also facing unprecedented species extinction rates. Not only are the species themselves at risk, so is everything connected to them, which includes us.
We work with charities and partners on projects which benefit nature and habitats. In 2020 we launched a community greenspace project, which aims to give back to local environments that have been crucial to individuals’ wellbeing during the pandemic.
Another way we support biodiversity is through our partnership with Climate Impact Partners. We support accredited offset projects that help people to engage with and protect nature, and to support habitat and wildlife restoration. This in turn promotes wellbeing, builds community and helps wildlife and ecosystems thrive for generations to come.
Through our investments we aim to ensure that we are going beyond just minimising harm, by looking at benefits that will enhance the local environment and community – including enhancing biodiversity. We assess biodiversity risk through understanding our investments’ operations and potential impacts. In addition, we seek to make investments in companies that are providing solutions and responding to the opportunities. Corporate engagement is essential to outline our expectations and support for biodiversity strategies – and where engagement has limited success, we use our influence through escalation via voting and support of shareholder resolutions.
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