AUM in Action

Canadian Pensions Failing on Climate Change

Canada’s largest pension plans are “moving too slowly” to address the climate crisis, according to NGO Shift’s annual Canadian Pension Climate Report Card. Despite incremental progress noted in this second iteration of the report, Canadian pension funds remain off track to meet the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global heating to 1.5°C – especially when compared to international peers in France, the Netherland and US. The report offers an independent benchmark for evaluating the quality, depth and credibility of climate policies for 11 of Canada’s largest pension managers, with the top ten managing more than C$2 trillion (US$1.48 trillion) in assets. Four of the pension funds in the report lacked emissions reduction targets for 2030 or 2050, while all except for Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec scored C– or lower on fossil fuel exclusion. “For the majority of Canadian pensions, there is a mismatch between the incremental pace of climate progress and the need for urgent action to prevent irreversible climate breakdown,” said Laura McGrath, Pension Engagement Manager at Shift. “What more will it take for Canadian pensions to recognise that their legal mandates will be impossible to fulfil in the long term unless the climate is stabilised at safe temperatures?”

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