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UNEP FI's PSI leads the way at Global Insurance Forum of the International Insurance Society, New York

18 June, 2015

The UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) Initiative and the UNEP Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System were key players at the 2015 Global Insurance Forum of the International Insurance Society, held in New York from 14 - 17 June. The forum culminated in a UN - Insurance Sector Summit held at the UN Headquarters, at which United Nations Under-Secretary-General and UNEP Executive Director, Mr. Achim Steiner, delivered a keynote address on insurance and global sustainable development challenges and opportunities.
Read the press release.
Watch Mr Steiner’s video address.


UNEP FI and partners release case study on the use of climate information in the finance sector

10 June, 2015

Using the example of South-African insurer Santam this report portrays how climatic shifts can lead to business challenges and new financial risks. It details how Santam decided to respond to these new threats; how a corresponding organizational process was initiated and carried out; and, importantly, the role of climate information in steering Santam's response measures towards increased climate-resilience.
Read the report.


Green economy financing gathers momentum amongst UAE financial institutions

25 May, 2015

At an unprecedented national conference held in Dubai, financial institutions (FIs), financial regulators, Green Economy policy makers and businesses gathered from across the UAE to commence dialogue on motivating the finance sector to become actively involved in the transition to a greener, more sustainable economy in the UAE and globally.
The conference – the ‘National Roundtable on Financing and Investing in Green Economy’ – co-hosted by UNEP FI and attended by 300 participants, explored the opportunities and challenges faced by the UAE finance sector in financing and investing in the Green Economy.
Read the UNEP FI brochure (English & Arabic).
Read the press release.
Read the speech by UNEP FI’s acting Head Mr Eric Usher.


Climate Finance Week: PDC, co-founded by UNEP FI, creating momentum to drive down GHG emissions with decarbonization of $45billion AUM; President Hollande hails its work

22 May, 2015

‘Climate Finance Week’, a series of events held in Paris on 19-22 May in preparation for the COP21 in December, successfully showcased a number of activities to combat climate change being led by UNEP FI and partners. The Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition (PDC), a project co-founded by UNEP FI, has now been joined by the UK’s Environment Agency Pension Fund, Local Government Super (LGS) in Australia and the French pension fund for civil servants (ERAFP), bringing the total number of PDC members to 12. This means that the PDC is now overseeing the decarbonization of US$ 45bn AUM, well on its way to the target of US$ 100bn in AUM by COP 21. The news comes in the wake of the endorsement of the work of the PDC by the President of France, François Hollande.
Read the full press release about the new members of PDC.
Read President Hollande’s comments in full.
Read a summary of UNEP FI’s work during Climate Finance Week.


UNEP FI and partners release draft report on climate-performance metrics and strategies for asset owners

19 May, 2015

The United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI), in collaboration with World Resource Institute’s Greenhouse Gas Protocol and the 2 Degree Investing Initiative, have released a final draft for discussion of their report “Climate Strategies and Metrics: Exploring Options for Institutional Investors”, at an event during Paris Climate Week.
The aim of the report is to inform institutional investors exploring to better align their portfolios with the low-carbon economy. In particular, the report serves as a valuable input to UNEP FI's Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition given that it further clarifies and compares different types of decarbonization and the different metrics through which ‘decarbonization progress’ can be measured. The report will formally published later in the summer.


UNEP FI supports Bank al Maghrib CEO convening to launch sustainable finance strategy in Morocco

19 May, 2015

One year after Bank al Maghrib (Moroccan Central Bank) held its first convening on finance and sustainability issues in June 2014, UNEP FI, together with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), has now lent its support to the Central Bank. On 19th May Bank al Maghrib convened a national CEO Roundtable, inviting all the country's banks to establish a Sustainable Finance Strategy for Morocco. The Roundtable was hosted by Governor Abdellatif Jouahri and addressed by Mr. Abdelouahed Fikrat, Secretary General for the Environment, followed by an expert panel featuring BMCE Bank, IFC, Societe Generale, and UNEP FI.
A working group co-led by Bank al Maghrib and GPBM (Moroccan Banking Association) will now be formed to develop a roadmap for the country’s banking sector. The roadmap is intended to contribute to achieving Morocco’s impending National Strategy on Sustainable Development, a policy framework that is currently being adopted in the wake of new environmental legislation passed in 2014.
Read the full press release.

Governor Abdellatif Jouahri, Bank al-Maghrib, during discussions at the Roundtable


South East Asian Capital Market Leaders Pursue Sustainable Business Agenda

18 May, 2015

The United Nations’ Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) initiative, a peer-to-peer learning platform for exploring how stock exchanges can promote improved corporate performance on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues, held its first Regional Dialogue for South East Asia in the heart of Bangkok earlier today. Co-convened by UNEP FI, the Dialogue brought together capital market leaders to tackle the most relevant and pressing sustainability topics in the region’s capital markets. In a specially recorded message to mark the occasion, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and UNEP Executive Director, Mr Achim Steiner, spoke of the invaluable contribution that the SSE can make in promoting the transition to a green economy.
Watch Mr Steiner’s video message. (7:30 mins)
Read the full press release about the event.
To access press coverage click here.
Korea Stock Exchange joins SSE Initiative.


UNEP FI’s PSI jointly hosts unprecedented ‘Roundtable’ on insurance industry and sustainable development

12 May, 2015

UNEP FI’s Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI), the largest collaborative initiative between the UN and the insurance industry, jointly hosted a Roundtable at the Swiss Re Centre for Global Dialogue on Insurance 2030: Policies and partnerships for sustainable development on 11th and 12th May. The Roundtable convened insurance leaders, policymakers and stakeholders to begin the essential process of developing the strategic framework to harness the full potential of the insurance industry for sustainable development through to 2030. It proposed a suite of policy and partnership options that would strengthen the alignment between the insurance industry and sustainable development, and form the basis for a set of “Insurance Development Goals”. Key speakers included the UNEP Executive Director, Mr Achim Steiner.
Read the full summary of the conference.
Roundtable organisers from UNEP and Swiss Re with Mr. Bruno Oberle (back row middle), Director of the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment


G7 Countries, Top Insurers Team Up for Climate Change Resilience

7 May, 2015

German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Gerd Müller, has unveiled the new G7 Initiative on Climate Risk Insurance, during a high-level forum attended by, as well as decision makers from the G7 and developing countries, the insurance industry, academia and civil society. Efforts to attract greater engagement by the insurance industry have been spearheaded by UNEP FI’s Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) - the largest collaborative initiative between the UN and the insurance industry, with 80 members representing more than 15% of world premium and US $9 trillion in assets. Read more
UNEP Executive Director, Achim Steiner (first left) talking to the high level panel during the G7 Conference on Climate Risk Insurance


UNEP FI's Principles for Sustainable Insurance launches call for insurance industry commitments to disaster resilience and sustainable development

1 May, 2015

The UNEP FI-created Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI), the largest collaborative initiative between the UN and the insurance industry, has launched an unprecedented initiative designed to encourage insurance organisations to demonstrate leadership by making voluntary commitments to build disaster resilience and promote sustainable development. The commitments support the aims of all UN-convened global policy frameworks culminating this year, on disaster risk reduction, financing for development, the Sustainable Development Goals, and climate change. The PSI is backed by insurers representing about 15 per cent of the world’s premium volume with US $9 trillion in assets under their management. These insurance commitments follow the successful launch of the PSI’s “United for disaster resilience” statement at the 3rd UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Sendai, Japan in March, outlining the roles of the insurance industry in helping implement the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.


UNEP FI Initiative represented at New York Stock Exchange bell-ringing event

23 April, 2015

The Portfolio Decarbonization Coalition (PDC), an initiative created in part by UNEP FI, was today represented at a meeting at the New York Stock Exchange on the need for low-carbon investments. The meeting, to mark Earth Day, and chaired by the UN Pension fund, was a platform to help mainstream the issue of decarbonization and to encourage other pension funds to decarbonize their portfolios.
Click here to read more.


Establishing China’s Green Financial System – Report of the Green Finance Task Force

22 April, 2015

China’s central bank, the People’s Bank of China, has launched a ground-breaking report that sets out in specific and practical terms an ambitious agenda of how China can green its rapidly developing financial and capital markets.

The report, entitled “Establishing China’s Green Financial System”, is the outcome of a Green Finance Task Force which was tasked to develop policy, regulatory and market-innovations that would better align China’s financial system with the needs of green industry and sustainable development. The Task Force was co-convened by the Research Bureau of the People’s Bank of China (PBC) and the United Nations Environment Programme project Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System (`UNEP Inquiry`).
Read the report.


UNEP FI project takes further step on making sustainability full part of investors duties in Japan

21 April, 2015

UNEP FI and PRI’s landmark project on Fiduciary Duty – an investigation into why environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues are not routinely incorporated into investor portfolios – took a significant step forward at the Responsible Investor Asia 2015 conference in Tokyo, Japan. The panel discussion, which included key players from across the industry, involved a forensic analysis of the Japanese investment market and the barriers to ESG integration.

In all, the project will examine the barriers to ESG integration in eight countries – Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Japan, South Africa, UK, and USA – and will propose practical actions for institutional investors and policy-makers to address these barriers.

View the event notes.


California department of insurance joins UNEP FI’s Principles for Sustainable Insurance

7 April, 2015

UNEP FI is delighted to announce that the California Department of Insurance, led by Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones, has recently become a signatory to the UNEP FI-created Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI). California is the largest insurance market in the US and the sixth largest in the world. The California Department of Insurance has taken a leading role in addressing climate change risk in the US insurance industry, and is the second insurance regulator to join the PSI, after the Philippine Insurance Commission. PSI membership in North America was also recently reinforced when TD Insurance in Canada became a PSI signatory company.



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