Goldman Sachs, Microsoft Back Al Gore’s New Climate Solutions Investment Fund
Generation Investment Management, a sustainability-focused investment firm chaired by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, announced the launch of Just Climate, a new climate solutions-focused investment business.
Strategic partners backing the new fund include Microsoft’s Climate Innovation Fund, Harvard University’s endowment fund manager, Ireland’s sovereign development fund ISIF, IMAS Foundation, and Hall Capital Partners.
“The sustainable investment industry has grown rapidly in recent years, a welcome development that gives the world a better chance of creating a net zero, prosperous, equitable, healthy and safe society. However, the climate crisis now demands an increase in the speed and scale of our collective actions by accelerating our current efforts and at the same time innovating new climate financing models. As a sector, we urgently need to seriously rethink how capital is allocated in order to deliver real progress toward the net zero commitments we have made.”
Just Climate aims to deliver impact by focusing on investments in projects and companies in hard to abate sectors and geographies, while simultaneously delivering appropriate risk-adjusted returns. The fund will target catalytic climate solutions in sectors including energy, transport, industry and buildings and natural climate solutions for food, agriculture and oceans.
Lucas Joppa, Chief Environmental Officer, Microsoft, said:
“If the world is to successfully address the climate crisis, we need to build the supporting financial infrastructure to accelerate a net zero economy. Through a combination of capital, a climate-led strategy, and both private and public sector partnerships, Just Climate aims to help enable a greater diversity of climate solutions while accelerating the development of markets that support those solutions’ procurement. Through this partnership, we look forward to helping grow areas of work that will aid in the global need to decarbonise and act as powerful assets in the fight against climate change.”
The firm stated that it will also include Just Transition considerations in the investment process, referring to the protection of those who are most vulnerable from the major economic shifts involved from the transition to net zero, and ensuring an equitable distribution of outcomes from the transition.
Just Climate will be Chaired by Generation IM’s Senior Partner David Blood, with Al Gore serving as Chairman of the Climate Impact Advisory Group, and Shaun Kingsbury, formerly CEO of UK Green Investment Bank, as Chief Investment Officer.
“While significant capital is flowing into climate solutions today, it is not enough nor is it flowing to all of those places that it needs to be. Just Climate has been founded to do the hard yards of addressing the most difficult to decarbonise segments of the global economy that investors have ignored until now. We believe our investments will have the potential to unlock these transition opportunities and mobilise further capital flows from the rest of the market.”