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Pension Funds Lagging in Biodiversity Investments

More than six-in-ten (62%) UK pensions funds are not currently invested any natural capital solutions and are failing to realise the “massive opportunities to support nature restoration”. According to a Pensions for Purpose report commissioned by Gresham House, 80% of asset owners interviewed do not view biodiversity risks separately from climate risks. Respondents said this is primarily due to challenges with data and availability of investment products, as well as limited internal resource to focus on biodiversity loss as they do for climate change. Pensions for Purpose’s research found that 54% of asset owners now see biodiversity and nature loss as an ESG risk and a theme with which to engage underlying investments. However, it also flagged that 38% of pension funds do not believe it is their responsibility to invest in natural capital, with a further 24% of respondents being “undecided”. “There is a real opportunity for assets owners and managers to positively impact on biodiversity levels and nature restoration while delivering strong returns,” the report said. CACEIS, the asset servicing banking group of Crédit Agricole and Santander, alongside the Zoological Society of London released a biodiversity and nature risk guide. Unveiled at Edinburgh’s PLSA Investment Conference, CACEIS said the guide’s goal is to “educate pension trustees on the significance of biodiversity risk in their scheme’s investment portfolios”. The guide offers a step-by-step approach that aims to assist pension trustees in the development of their own biodiversity and nature risk policies. 

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