UK pensions hidden emissions

The carbon footprint of emissions financed by pensions from FTSE100 companies is seven times higher than the total reported emissions of those companies.

The analysis, from Make My Money Matter, in collaboration with Scottish Widows and Route2, is the first of its kind and directs a spotlight in the indirect actions of companies. The subsequent report considers the carbon footprint of corporate pensions, comparing those to the more commonly reported scopes 1 and 2 company operational emissions.

With £20bn invested in company pensions every year, in an industry is worth £3tr, corporate pensions are potentially big levers to accelerate climate protection, but currently the emit 131 million tonnes of carbon, equivalent to roughly one third of the UK’s annual carbon emissions.

If third-party DC pensions ae added, then the results are worse, and means the typical FTSE 100 company’s UK pension total is responsible for financing at least 11 times their UK operational (scope 1 and 2) emissions, although this is an estimate.

Richard Curtis, Co- Founder at Make My Money Matter: “This report leaves us in no doubt - pensions are one of the most powerful tools UK businesses have to tackle the climate emergency. But for too long, businesses have failed to capitalise on this opportunity - company pensions now finance a staggering seven times more carbon than the

Mixed results on UK sustainability

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