Climate and Energy Policy
An essential part of addressing the climate change and building a low-carbon, sustainable economy is working with policymakers to adopt and implement climate and energy policies that stimulate private investment in cleaner and renewable energy, energy efficiency and de-carbonization of the electric power sector. Investors are advocating for such policies at international, federal, regional and state levels.
The INCR Policy Working Group helps elevate the investor voice in climate and clean energy policy discussions. Investors emphasize that strong policies will provide the long-term certainty they need for investments that will create jobs, promote economic growth and generate safe, stable returns. Investors engage policymakers and regulators in a number of ways, including by signing public letters and statements, authoring blogs and opinion pieces, and meeting with legislators and regulators.
INCR Policy Working Group
The INCR Policy Working Group focuses on five distinct areas of policy engagement:
- International Collaboration: INCR members collaborate with other investor groups, including the European IIGCC, the Australian/New Zealand IGCC, the Asian AIGCC, UN PRI and UNEP-FI, to highlight worldwide investor support for strong climate and clean energy policy.
- Transportation: Innovations in efficiency and low-carbon alternatives in the transportation sector present huge opportunities for investors and for increased competitiveness by the U.S. auto industry. INCR members support policies that promote clean and low carbon fuel sources, improving Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions caused by transportation activities. INCR members also support research reports showing the investment case for such policies.
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Clean Air Act: Under the Clean Air Act, the EPA has proposed a set of historic regulations that will reduce air emissions, boost the economy and create jobs. Investors have signed letters and met with Congressional staff to ensure strong implementation of the Utility Mercury and Air Toxics Standard, the Cross State Air Pollution Rule and the Carbon Pollution Standard for Future Power Plants. INCR members will continue to support regulations that reduce air pollution, encourage cleaner, renewable energy sources and create new jobs for American workers.
- Corporate Engagement: As outlined in The 21st Century Corporation: The Ceres Roadmap to Sustainability, companies are expected to align publicly disclosed policy positions on climate and energy issues with the policies they advocate through their lobbying and political expenditures. As shareholders, INCR members work with companies in their portfolios to help establish and maintain this alignment.
- Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy: Investors have a unique interest in helping to develop policy that will directly support low-carbon investment opportunities. INCR members support a range of policies at the state and federal level such as the Production Tax Credit for renewable energy, the California AB32 climate and clean energy program and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).
In 2012, INCR and five other global investor networks collaborated on an open letter to the governments of the world’s largest economies, outlining urgent need for strong climate and clean energy policies that will support the necessary scale of low carbon investments to avoid catastrophic climate change impacts.
That same year, INCR joined with its global counterparts IIGCC (Europe), IGCC (Australia/New Zealand) and AIGCC (Asia) to form the Global Investor Coalition on Climate Change (GIC).
|“As investors we prefer long-term certainty on energy and climate policy to be able to predict investment risks and opportunities. National regulations on greenhouse gas emissions will not only allow America to compete globally with other advanced nations whose regulations do place a premium on low- or zero-emissions technologies, but will also benefit consumers and workers, create jobs, and help investors seize new economic opportunities in clean technology and other climate change solutions.”
Stu Dalheim, director of shareholder advocacy at Calvert Investment Management, Inc. (INCR Member)
Climate and Energy Advocacy
Bill Green, senior managing director at Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets, and co-founder of VantagePoint’s cleantech practice, argued in an op-ed that the highest Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards of 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025 would “unlock investment and innovation, create jobs, and spur economic growth, in the automotive sector and beyond.”
International Investor Collaboration
In October 2011, 285 investors representing more than $20 trillion in assets signed a joint statement stressing the urgency for national and international policy action that will stimulates private investment in climate change solutions, creates jobs, and is essential for ensuring the long-term sustainability and stability of the world economy.