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Tuesday 19 November 2019


Dutch financial sector signs govt's climate goal commitment

Written by Sunniva Kolostyak

Dutch pension funds, asset managers, insurers and banks today sign a commitment to follow the government’s goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The commitment, published by the pension fund association Pensioenfederatie, means the financial sector will contribute to the implementation of the Paris Agreement and the government’s climate agreement to reduce CO2 emissions by 49 per cent by 2030, compared to 1990 emissions.

“The commitment of the financial sector is necessary for the success of the energy transition and relates both to offering appropriate market-based financing arrangements for sustainability and to integrating climate goals, including CO2 reduction objectives, into their own strategy,” the agreement read.

The signatories also pledged to follow four actions, the first being to participate in the financing of the energy transition and accept obligations within the framework of legislation and regulations and the risk-return objectives.

The parties must measure the CO2 content of their portfolios and report on these publicly from 2020, and by 2022 at the latest, the parties must announce action plans to comply with the Paris Climate Agreement. This can be a combination of approaches, including CO2 reduction targets for the portfolio where possible, as well as engagement, and the financing of CO2-reducing projects.

Finally, institutions must organise annual consultations with all stakeholders on the progress of the implementation of the agreements.

The agreement states: “The financial sector wants to make a substantial contribution to sustainability projects to properly shape the energy transition in the various sectors of the economy and society, on a market basis. Through the Financing of the Climate Agreement task force, the financial sector has worked to promote cross-sectoral forms of financing in order to better coordinate the supply and demand of financing, and to identify and resolve potential bottlenecks.”

Moreover, the agreement outlines how the climate agreement affects all sectors of the Dutch economy and society, and requires broad support and effective cooperation from all stakeholders and stakeholders.

Umbrella organisations Pensioenfederatie, the Dutch Association of Insurers, Dufas and NVB will also support the initiative by contributing to the annual consultation on the progress of implementation, as well as by organising work conferences on measuring and managing climate impact.

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