Skip to main content
//empty //empty

Norway’s US$1.2-trillion wealth fund will ask the companies in its portfolio that emit the most carbon dioxide (CO2) for more detailed climate-related data in order to understand the risk posed to its investments, a top official said.

The world’s largest sovereign fund, which invests Norway’s oil revenues, has for the past two decades been at the forefront of efforts to get companies to makes disclosures about the impact of their business on the environment.

“What we want to see is whether they have a business model that can survive also in a low-carbon society and to understand how will they address that,” said Carine Smith Ihenacho, the fund’s chief corporate governance officer.

Story continues below advertisement

“We want scenario analysis, including a two-degree scenario analysis, and we want the company to be open about the assumptions for the analysis,” she said, without naming the companies the fund was contacting.

The 2015 Paris Agreement calls on countries worldwide to limit global warming this century to well below 2 C above preindustrial levels.

Norway’s fund is invested in 9,200 companies, or 1.5 per cent of the world’s stocks. It listed its own carbon footprint at 107.6 millions of tonnes of CO2 equivalent in 2019, which is double Norway’s and had risen from 107.4 millions in 2018.

The fund has recently changed CEO, appointing hedge fund veteran Nicolai Tangen, who started this week.

LOBBYING ON AGENDA

How companies lobby on climate change has risen higher up the agenda of investors from a decade ago, as they seek to understand the interaction with policy makers.

Last month, Norway’s Storebrand Asset Management began divesting from firms, citing their climate lobbying practices.

During the latest annual general meeting (AGM) season, the Norwegian wealth fund voted in favour of all motions on the topic put forward at AGMs of firms it is invested in.

Story continues below advertisement

Although only five motions called for more transparency on a company’s climate lobbying, Ms. Smith Ihenacho said she expected more such demands during the next AGM season.

“This is very much on shareholders’ agenda,” she said, citing in particular the need to know about companies’ membership of associations.

“We want to know where the discrepancies are between a company’s policy association and a trade association they may support financially,” she said.

The wealth fund is unlikely to follow Storebrand’s lead, however, as it prefers engagement with firms in which it invests, Ms. Smith Ihenacho said.

Be smart with your money. Get the latest investing insights delivered right to your inbox three times a week, with the Globe Investor newsletter. Sign up today.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies