ESG Today: Week in Review

This week in ESG news: State Street to require portfolio companies to provide climate disclosure; investors call to keep gas out of EU Taxonomy; Blackstone invests $3 billion in renewable energy developer Invenergy; Citi launches sustainability-linked supply chain finance program; IBM acquires sustainability data & analytics provider Envizi; BlackRock launches fund investing in net zero transition winners; Maersk pledges to provide net zero supply chains; SBTi outlines action plan for 2022; EY says companies gearing up for ESG-focused M&A; Iberdrola makes big move in UK solar market; HSBC launches ESG funds for fixed income investors, and more.

See below for the highlights of the past week, and get all your ESG news at ESG Today:

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Iberdrola Expands Position in UK Renewables Market with 800 MW Solar Acquisitions

Global energy and electricity provider Iberdrola announced today a significant expansion of its presence in the UK renewable energy market, acquiring 17 solar photovoltaic (PV) projects with a combined capacity of more than 800 MW.

The transactions consist of two separate deals conducted by Iberdrola’s UK subsidiary ScottishPower, with 12 projects acquired from Elgin Energy, and remaining 5 projects from Lightsource BP. Following the transactions, Iberdrola’s market share in the solar PV sector will rise from 2% to 9%.

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HSBC Builds Out Sustainable Fixed Income Suite with Global Bond ETF

HSBC Asset Management (HSBC AM) announced today the launch of the HSBC Bloomberg Sustainable Global Aggregate 1-3y Bond UCTIS ETF, expanding its recently introduced suite of sustainable fixed income ETFs.

The new fund follows the launch earlier this month of the HSBC Bloomberg EUR Corporate Sustainable Bond UCITS ETF and the HSBC Bloomberg USD Corporate Sustainable Bond UCITS ETF.

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Volvo Launches Electric Heavy Duty with 85% Range Increase

Volvo Trucks announced today the launch of a new heavy-duty electric truck for the North American market, with significantly expanded range and energy storage capacity compared with its current model.

The Volvo VNR Electric truck model forms part of Volvo’s all-electric heavy duty truck line, which the company launched in November 2020. The initial class 8 VNR model was introduced in North America in late 2020, featuring a 240 km range. The enhanced VNR, featuring improved battery design and a six battery option will see this range increase 85% to 440 km, with energy storage of up to 565kWh.

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CRISIL to Assess, Disclose ESG Impact on Credit Ratings

India-based ratings, research, risk, and policy advisory services provider and S&P Global company CRISIL Ratings announced today it will begin disclosing the impact of ESG parameters when assigning credit ratings.

According to CRISIL, the initiative comes as the consideration of ESG factors take on increasing importance in the decision-making process of investors, and as investors begin to screen opportunities through an ESG lens.

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MSCI Appoints Eric Moen as Head of ESG and Climate

Investor-focused decisions support tools and services company MSCI announced today the appointment of Eric Moen as Head of ESG and Climate. In his new role, Moen will have responsibility for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the ESG and Climate team, and will drive collaboration and innovation across MSCI’s product lines.

Moen takes over the role from Remy Briand, who has in turn been named Chief Product Officer for the company. The announcements were made along with a series of senior leadership changes at MSCI, including the appointment of Head of Index and Chief Responsibility Officer Diana Tidd to the fully dedicated to the role of Chief Responsibility Officer, guiding ESG policies for the company, and responsible for integrating ESG practices across MSCI’s strategy process, governance structure and business operations.

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SBTi Action Plan for 2022 Includes Scope 3 Target Setting, Sector-Specific Guidance

The Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), one of the key organizations focused on aligning corporate environmental sustainability action with the global goals of limiting climate change unveiled its action plan for 2022, as the initiative aims to scale adoption of companies and organizations setting science-based climate targets.

Founded in 2015, SBTi was formed as a collaboration between CDP, World Resources Institute (WRI), the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), and the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), with the goal to establish science-based environmental target setting as a standard corporate practice.

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ICE Says Carbon Contract Trading Surges to $1 Trillion Notional Value in 2021

Global exchange and clearing house operator Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) reported that trading of environmental contracts in 2021 surged to record volumes, reaching 18 billion tons of carbon allowances traded in the year, equivalent to an estimated $1 trillion in notional value.

According to ICE, a record 19 million environmental futures and options contracts traded on the exchange in 2021, including 15.2 billion EU carbon allowances, 2.4 billion California carbon allowances, 346 million Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative allowances and 255 million U.K. carbon allowances.

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ING Invests in Sustainable Energy Innovation and Investment Platform EIT InnoEnergy

Amsterdam-based global bank ING announced today an investment in EIT InnoEnergy, becoming the first financial institution shareholder in the sustainable energy-focused innovation and investment platform.

Launched in 2010, and supported by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), EIT InnoEnergy is one of the largest climate tech and renewable energy tech investors, backing innovations across areas including energy storage, transport and mobility, renewables and sustainable buildings and cities. Since inception, EIT InnoEnergy has invested €560 million in over 380 companies. Other shareholders include Volkswagen, TotalEnergies, Naturgy, and EDF.

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Citi Launches its First Sustainability-Linked Supply Chain Finance Program in MENA Region

Citi announced the implementation of a new sustainability-linked supply chain finance program for chemical and consumer goods company, Henkel. Initially launched for the company’s suppliers in Algeria, the initiative marks Citi’s first Middle East and North Africa (MENA) SSCF program, as the bank looks to expand its sustainable finance activities.

Marcel Hanen, Citi Regional Head of the Global Subsidiaries Group – Middle East, North Africa, Pakistan and Turkey, said:

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