Our climate ambition
The climate crisis represents the greatest long-term threat to the planet, economies and societies. We must be active, ambitious and impactful in the face of climate change to shape a better future.
That’s why our ambition is to become a net-zero emissions asset manager by 2040.*
While there is clearly a moral imperative to act, we also believe committing to a sustainable transition represents a huge economic and investment opportunity.
"This does not mean all assets in our portfolios today will be aligned with our net-zero objective. Nor does it mean that we will cease to invest in assets that are currently associated with significant emissions. Rather, it means that over time we will aim to evolve our portfolios to align with this long-term goal." - Mark Versey, Chief Executive Officer
*This will cover all asset classes and investment funds that we manage on behalf of Aviva. Third-party clients are invited to express a preference as to whether they would like the Aviva climate commitment to apply to their portfolios. Investors in collective investment funds will be consulted in line with regulatory requirements. We will write to you if any of this applies to your fund.
We are proud to be members of the Net Zero Asset Managers initiative and the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ) as part of the Race to Zero.
Our climate activities
Climate change is the biggest long-term systemic risk to the global economy as well as the biggest market failure in history.1 We must act because it is in the best interests of our clients as well as the integrity of the market. We must act because we have the power to do so, and it is the right thing for the planet and all life on it. We are supporting Aviva's broader climate goals – below is a summary of examples of where we are supporting the Aviva-led initiatives and also our own initatives.
- The Economics of Climate Change: The Stern Review is a landmark study that was published on 30 October 2006
- 2019 is the baseline year for measuring carbon emissions/intensity. For more information, please visit: Aviva’s climate goals – glossary and definitions – Aviva plc
- Emissions from investments made on behalf of our clients
- Subset of asset classes, Scope 1 and 2 only. Scope 1 covers direct emissions from a company's own operations. Scope 2 covers indirect emissions from electricity consumed. Scope 3 includes all other indirect emissions that occur in a company’s value chain. (Source: Carbon Trust). For further information on Scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions, please refer to: Taking Climate Action – Aviva plc
- ESG Baseline Exclusions Policy Document. These exclusions apply to funds actively managed by Aviva Investors
- This represents an ambition. Aviva Investors has a fixed target for our climate transition strategies to align portfolios to science-based targets. In all other instances, setting science-based targets is one of our key engagement asks of investee companies. For more information, please see page eight of the Climate-related Financial Disclosure 2021 and page five of our Climate Transition Plan
Shaping the climate debate
The Race to Zero is a race we win or lose together. We have a responsibility to be active stewards of our clients’ assets and must also be active stewards of the financial system.
We have a long history in what we call macro stewardship – engagement with regulators and policymakers to change the rules of the game in an effort to correct material market failures and mitigate systemic risks.
As the international community still lacks a comprehensive finance strategy for the Paris Agreement, we have been convening a multi-stakeholder coalition of organisations to call for reform of the international financial architecture that supervises and regulates finance, including the creation of an International Platform for Climate Finance. This new platform will aim to harness the financial system to support the wider economic transition needed for net zero.
See change in action
Climate change is the biggest systemic challenge of our time. Discover how we're approaching climate action and supporting the transition to a low-carbon and climate-resilient world.
Key milestones through a history of climate action
We have been at the forefront of climate action for decades. Our micro-stewardship centres on our investments. We use our shareholder voice to actively engage and support companies in changing corporate behaviours. At a macro level, we have a long history of involvement on climate change policy, engaging with policymakers, global governance bodies and regulators to correct market failures and bring about transformational change.
Policy and industry leadership
We joined the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) in 2015, calling for it to be mandatory and include sovereign disclosures. In 2022, we worked with the World Bank on its TCFD equivalent for sovereigns and urged finance ministers and central bank governors for greater climate ambition.
£1 billion in sustainable lending
In 2020, we committed to delivering £1 billion of climate transition-focused loans by 2025, accelerating the transition to a low-carbon economy in real estate. We have delivered just over £1 billion of sustainable lending in the last year, exceeding the target three years early.
1.4 million tonnes of carbon
In 2021, we acquired 6,300 hectares of Scottish moorland. In partnership with Par Equity, over 3,000 hectares of land will be newly planted and 1,800 hectares of peatlands restored. An estimated 1.4 million tonnes of carbon will be sequestered over the project’s lifetime.
Turning talk into action: ESG webcast series
Introducing 'Turning talk into action', a series of thought-provoking webcasts debating the biggest ESG issues with leading experts committed to change. Climate topics include TCFD and portfolio reporting requirements, the transition to net zero in real assets, investing to best support the transition to a low-carbon world, and others.
Confronting a permacrisis? The intersection between antimicrobial resistance, climate change and biodiversity loss
23 Nov 2022
Will a warmer and less biodiverse world give pathogens new opportunities, and do we have the tools to confront disease? This report discusses the complex intersection of three planetary crises and calls for urgent action to slow resistance to antimicrobial drugs – an obvious public health emergency.
Building better: Investing in the climate transition through real assets
15 Nov 2022
Investors in real assets can propel the transition to a more sustainable future while also benefiting from portfolio diversification and attractive returns, says Mark Meiklejon.
Act now: A climate emergency roadmap for the international financial architecture
1 Nov 2022
To help tackle the climate emergency, financial institutions and governments must work together to reform the global financial architecture and create a more robust net-zero transition plan, argue Steve Waygood and Thomas Tayler.
ESG considerations for social housing
28 Oct 2022
Social housing plays a pivotal role in providing affordable housing for those most in need of it, benefiting local communities and countries as a whole. But investors considering an allocation to the asset class must pay close attention to the ESG implications, argues Mikhaila Crosby.
Alpha, asset stranding and action: The state of play in Climate Transition Credit
6 Oct 2022
Will new climate legislation accelerate the transition, or will the energy crisis hamper it? Thomas Chinery and Justine Vroman assess the implications for strategically positioned bondholders.
Reframe and reclaim: How to win the ESG argument
6 Oct 2022
To restore trust in ESG, we need to be much clearer on its limitations as well as its strengths, argues Mirza Baig.
Resilience and selectivity: The outlook for real estate long income
5 Oct 2022
Renos Booth, Isabel Gossling and Kris McPhail from our real estate long income team discuss the strengths of long-income strategies in a period of high inflation and rising rates.
So, you’ve set your net-zero target: What next? Practical considerations for asset owners on achieving net zero
27 Sep 2022
Asset owners are increasingly committing to net-zero emissions in their portfolios by or before 2050, but it is a huge and complex undertaking. What do asset owners need to consider as they start on their decarbonisation journey?
Patterns, partnerships and a Marshall Plan for the planet: An interview with Nigel Topping
21 Sep 2022
The UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for the COP26 summit in the UK sets out how the private and public sectors can work together to tackle the climate crisis and other systemic threats. Words by Miles Costello.
Ring the changes: An interview with Kate Raworth
16 Sep 2022
The influential academic speaks to AIQ about the flaws in traditional economic thinking and how her revolutionary “Doughnut” offers a fresh approach to solving the world’s greatest problems.
Moving mountains and markets: A new way to approach systematic risk
14 Sep 2022
A series of market failures have brutally exposed the shortcomings of Modern Portfolio Theory. However, market participants play an active role in markets; they are not mere bystanders. Understanding this could provide a better way to think about and deal with systematic risk.
The levers of change: A systems approach to reconcile finance with planetary boundaries
13 Sep 2022
Financial services underpin all economic activity, which itself depends on Earth’s natural capital. Resolving their interconnected issues to bring about a just transition will require a holistic, systems-thinking approach.
Inflation, volatility and net zero: The outlook for real estate equity
12 Sep 2022
Ben Sanderson and James Stevens from our real estate team discuss risks and opportunities for property investors amid changing work patterns, rising inflation and the race to net zero.
A tragedy of perception: Fixing the ESG blind spots in business, finance and economics
8 Sep 2022
A distorted sense of reality has caused us to disregard sustainability concerns when modelling economies, companies and finance. We can no longer ignore such material issues just because they are too hard to fathom. This is where systems thinking comes in, explains Steve Waygood.
Conflict, inflation and energy security: An updated outlook for infrastructure investors
6 Sep 2022
Darryl Murphy and Sean McLachlan from our infrastructure team assess how Russia’s war on Ukraine, fears over energy security and surging inflation have changed the prospects for infrastructure investors.
Redefining stewardship: Why stakeholder capitalism needs to wake up
31 Aug 2022
Asset managers and other financial institutions have a duty to act in the best interests of their customers and society. Macro stewardship will be crucial to meeting these responsibilities, argues Mark Versey.
Play your part: Investing to support the climate transition
Today, the climate investment landscape is a veritable mixed bag of active and passive approaches covering a broad spectrum of investment universes and objectives. In this paper, we explore some of the pitfalls of first-generation climate strategies, the meaning of Paris or net zero aligned investments, and the benefits of adopting a holistic approach to climate change investing with a focus on science-based targets.
The Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ) brings together net zero alliances from across the finance sector as part of the Race to Zero. We are also proud to support Aviva’s leading role in GFANZ through our Group CEO Amanda Blanc, who is part of the GFANZ Principals Group.
Note: ESG and Climate related engagement, goals and exclusions can vary at the investment strategy and portfolio level depending upon country, jurisdiction and individual client needs.