30 finance firms pledge to end deforestation

Institutions with more than $8.7 trillion in assets, including Aviva, Schroders and Axa, have committed $7.2 billion to eliminate investment in activities resulting in deforestation.

Aviva, Schroders and Axa are among more than 30 financial institutions with more than $8.7 trillion in assets that have committed 5.3 billion pounds ($7.2 billion) to eliminate investment in activities linked to deforestation.

“Protecting our forests and their biodiversity is fundamental to the fight against climate change,” said Amanda Blanc, group CEO at Aviva. “Financial institutions have a pivotal role, using our influence on the companies we invest in to encourage and ensure best practice.”

This comes alongside a pledge at COP26 Tuesday to provide 8.75 billion pounds ($11.9 billion) of public finance from 12 countries from 2021 to 2025, although this pledge was originally made in 2014.

This will support activities in developing countries, including restoring degraded land, tackling wildfires and supporting the rights of indigenous communities.

“At COP26, leaders have signed a landmark agreement to protect and restore the earth’s forests,” UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said at the Forest and Land Use event at COP26. “These great teeming ecosystems — these cathedrals of nature — are the lungs of our planet. Forests support communities, livelihoods and food supply, and absorb the carbon we pump into the atmosphere. They are essential to our very survival.”

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Natasha Turner

Natasha is global editor at ESG Clarity, part of Mark Allen Financial, and has been a financial journalist for seven years. She has been shortlisted for Story of the Year and Investment Journalist of the...