The Investor Watch Group, responsible for climate and environmental sustainability think tanks Carbon Tracker and Planet Tracker, announced today the launch of Industry Tracker, a new research house for investors focused on industrial sectors that are critical to economies but remain difficult to decarbonize, which present some of the key challenges on the path to net zero.

The Industry Tracker initiative will be led by Carole Ferguson, who joins after serving as Head of Investor Research at climate research provider and environmental disclosure platform CDP. The initiative will build on the previous work of CDP’s best-in-class investor research team in addressing materiality for high impact sectors and complement the sectoral and company-level work already being done by Carbon Tracker and Planet Tracker.

Ferguson said:

“Despite the massive growth of the sustainable finance industry and more and more countries committing to ambitious net zero targets, capital is not currently being directed to the type of real-economy transformation that is required. That is where Industry Tracker comes in – to provide investors with detailed bottom-up research that links financial and climate metrics, and to support the reallocation of investment towards vital solutions for these critical sectors.”

Industry Tracker aims to provide investors with the evidence base they need to engage with companies in climate-critical sectors regarding their transition plans, and to facilitate the redirection of capital to provide the deep emissions cuts needed for the decarbonisation of the global economy. The research will look across the value chain at sectors including cement, steel and chemicals, capital goods, technology, health and other consumer sectors. The team will cover the largest and most impactful companies globally, conducting bottom-up analysis to assess alignment with 1.5 degree pathways and the implications for business models, earnings and balance sheets.

The initiative’s first piece of research, expected to be published this summer, will focus on the European steel industry and its scope to adopt hydrogen technology to transition away from carbon-intensive blast furnace plants.

Mark Campanale, Founder and Executive Chairman of Carbon Tracker, said:

“I’m delighted to be working with Carole on the launch of Industry Tracker and adding another string to the bow of the award-winning Carbon Tracker and Planet Tracker family. With this launch, I’m confident that between the three sister organisations, we now cover all of the major investment sectors of interest to the financial community, and can accurately track the environmental footprint of companies across the entire value chain. I very much look forward to working with the team and building on our essential work in providing systems-wide solutions to address the climate crisis and wider degradation of the world’s natural capital.”

Paul Simpson, CEO of CDP, added:

“CDP launched the investor research work in 2015 to provide high quality, sector-focused environmental research from an award-winning team of financial analysts. Over that time, it built up a strong investor following and became widely recognised in the market for its unique approach. We are proud to have innovated and established this valuable offering to investors and to support its next phase of development as Industry Tracker. It is not often that NGOs merge or transfer initiatives, however, with the need for greater harmonisation and focus, we are delighted to have worked in this way with Investor Watch and are confident Industry Tracker is well placed to deliver further impact.”