Pensions could be the trailblazers for crucial investment in nature, wildlife and biodiversity.
That’s according to a report by Scottish Widows, claiming that the pension sector has the capability to kickstart the necessary financial support that would complement public sector action.
The report looks to set a blueprint for other pension funds to invest in ‘nature-positive’ assets – helping to restore nature and bringing financial returns in the long run.
Given that pension funds control close to $60 trillion (£49tn) of global assets, Scottish Widows stresses that the sector has a key role to play in turning the tide on nature investments.
It states that since 1990, 420 million hectares of forest have been converted for other human uses, which has led to one million plant and animal species facing extinction.
Maria Nazarova-Doyle, Head of Responsible Investments and Stewardship at Scottish Widows, explained: “Pension funds play a huge role in the economy. Their investment decisions don’t just influence the long-term financial wellbeing of millions of savers but have the potential to influence the long-term health of nature and the planet too.”
Natural England Chair Tony Juniper also contributed to the report, adding: “More action is needed, and the protection of nature must become a primary concern for the financial services sector more broadly.
“Today’s publication represents a solid starting point for greater collaboration across the industry and beyond on this existential issue, evidencing the art of the possible on nature-positive investment.”