As part of its plan to address environmental, social and governance factors, the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec has released its first stewardship investing report.

The report outlined the Caisse’s strategic actions on key issues like climate change, corporate governance, women in business and international taxation.

“We’ve been integrating ESG factors into our investment processes for many years now,” said Michael Sabia, president and chief executive officer of the Caisse, in a press release.

“And 2017 has been an important year for la Caisse in terms of stewardship investing. We adopted an investment strategy to address climate change that sets out ambitious and measurable objectives and defines a timeline and framework. Put another way, from now on, climate will factor into each investment decision and our portfolio will evolve accordingly. Our approach is clear: contribute constructively to the fundamental transition the world is facing.”

Read: Focus on specific ESG factors for most material benefit: report

One section of the report presents the carbon intensity of the Caisse’s 2017 portfolio holdings. It noted, for example, that 68 per cent of the Caisse’s holdings for the year were in sectors that have a low carbon intensity and make up 12 per cent of the fund’s emissions related to its investments. The energy, materials and non-renewable electricity sectors were the biggest carbon offenders, together making up 13 per cent of the portfolio while contributing 78 per cent of the carbon output.

In October, the Caisse joined a group of 30 financial institutions and pension funds managing assets of roughly $1.2 trillion to call on Canadian companies to disclose their exposure to climate change risks.

When it comes to gender equality, the report noted several efforts underway aimed at increasing the number of women in finance and business. After engaging in a campaign since 2015 aimed at encouraging Quebec youthto see entrepreneurship and a viable and exciting career option, the Caisse will release a version of it in 2018 directed at young women.

In addition, the Caisse analyzes the progression, both in terms of rank and salary, of its female employees is closely analyzed on a yearly basis, the report noted. The organization also has an internal mentorship program aimed at boosting the careers of female employees identified as having particular potential.

Read: Japan a hotbed of ESG activity

 

 

Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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