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Investors of One-Third of World’s Capital Call for Carbon Disclosure

The Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) has announced that a record 722 investors with US$87 trillion in assets — around a third of the world’s invested capital — have asked more than 5,000 public companies to disclose their carbon emissions and climate change strategies through CDP. Additionally, there has been strong growth in the number of investors asking listed companies to submit water and forest-related information through CDP, further demonstrating that natural capital is increasingly understood to be of material value to the global market.

The news accompanies the launch of the 2013 CDP disclosure season. More than 80% of the largest listed companies used the CDP system for climate accountability in 2012. Requests will this year go to over 5,000 listed companies around the world.
 
CDP already holds the biggest collection globally of self-reported corporate climate data. The Forest Footprint Disclosure Project (FFD), pioneered by the Global Canopy Program, is merging with CDP to provide companies and investors with a single source of information for the interrelated issues of climate, water and forests, making CDP the world’s most comprehensive platform for natural capital disclosure.

2013 highlights:

  • Record number of investors become signatories to CDP’s climate change programme up 10% from last year to 722 signatories with US$87 trillion in assets (655 investors with US$78 trillion in 2012).
  • Strong growth in investor interest in the Americas, with Brazil’s Banco do Brasil Previdência the largest new signatory (assets of US$1,081 billion).
  • Global spread with the first signatories from Taipei, including Cathay Financial Holdings and Fubon Financial Holdings.
  • Heightened investor engagement: Carbon Action, a CDP initiative to accelerate company action on carbon reduction in high emitting industries, has seen more than a fivefold increase in its investor signatories since inception in 2011. This year, on behalf of 190 investors with assets of US$18 trillion, CDP will call on CEOs of 301 of the world’s largest public companies for cost-effective management and reductions of their carbon emissions. The largest new signatories include JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Banco do Brasil S/A.
  • Growing awareness of water as a critical business issue with signatories to CDP’s water program almost quadrupling in just three years, reaching 530, 13% up from last year, with $US57 trillion in assets (137 investor signatories in 2010).
  • Twice as many investors investigating exposure to forest risk commodities. The number of signatories to CDP’s forests program has more than doubled, reaching 184 with US$13 trillion in assets.

 “Since pioneering a system for corporate climate disclosure a little over 10 years ago, the number of investor signatories to CDP programs has grown more than twentyfold and growth in the number of companies using CDP has nearly matched this rate,” says Paul Simpson, CDP’s chief executive officer. “This is testament to the economic relevance of environmental data to investment decisions. Our expansion into different areas of natural capital, and our efforts to provide integrated information to the global market, represents vital progress toward a sustainable economy in which natural resources are valued efficiently.”
 
Companies have until May 30, 2013 to report their emissions and emissions-reducing activities to CDP, and June 27 to submit water and forest information. The data will be synthesized in a number of public and investor-facing reports to be published this autumn. CDP data is also disseminated via investor channels, such as Bloomberg terminals, where it is downloaded an average of 1 million times every six weeks.

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