A coalition of sustainability-focused investor networks from North America, Europe, Asia and Australia announced today the launch of the Net Zero Investment Framework, a new initiative aiming to promote and guide asset owners and asset managers to align their investments to net zero emissions.

The networks also announced the release of a Net Zero Asset Owners Commitment, outlining specific actions for asset owners to achieve Paris-aligned portfolios, including setting an interim portfolio emissions reduction target by 2030 or sooner. The commitment is being release through the Paris Aligned Investment Initiative, an investor-led forum to support investors in aligning their portfolios and activities to the goals of the Paris Agreement, involving more than 110 investors representing $33 trillion in assets.

The organizations involved in the launch include Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC) engaging with European investors, Ceres covering North America, the Asia Investor Group on Climate Change (AIGCC) covering Asia and the Investor Group on Climate Change (IGCC) covering Australia and New Zealand.

Mindy Lubber, CEO and President of Ceres, said:

“The global shift to net zero emissions is one of the biggest investment opportunities of the 21st century. Global emissions need to reach net zero by 2050 or sooner to limit the systemic and financial risks of the climate crisis. Asset owners and managers everywhere must align their investments with net zero emissions by 2050 or sooner, with interim portfolio emissions reduction targets for 2030 or earlier. The Net Zero Investment Framework enables investors worldwide to implement the actions needed to transition their investments to net zero.”

According to the organizations, the Framework enables investors to decarbonise investment portfolios and increase investment in climate solutions, in a way that is consistent with and contributes to a 1.5°C net zero emissions future. Investors can develop a net zero investment strategy around the key components of the Framework, which include objectives and targets, strategic asset allocation and asset class alignment, alongside policy advocacy and, investor engagement activity and governance.

The organizations stated that 36 investors, managing more than $8 trillion in assets, including both asset owners and asset managers, are putting the Framework to practical use, with most already taking the first steps to defining an industry standard approach to net zero investing.

Stephanie Pfeifer, CEO, Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change, said:

“The global investment community has been called on to play its part in the transition to net zero – and it is answering that call. This new swathe of net zero commitments from asset owners demonstrates the growing determination from investors to make important decisions to support a net zero and resilient future.”