Nature Action 100 announces companies, start of investor engagement process
26 September – Nature Action 100, the first global investor engagement initiative to address the urgent crisis of nature and biodiversity loss around the world, unveiled a list of 100 companies in key sectors in which 190 institutional investor participants – representing $23.6 trillion in assets under management or advice – will engage.
The investors participating in Nature Action 100 have kicked off the initiative’s engagement phase by sending letters to the 100 companies, worth more than $9 trillion in market capital, calling for urgent and necessary actions to protect and restore nature and ecosystems and thereby mitigate financial risk. The Nature Action 100 Investor Expectations for Companies outlines a set of timely actions companies can implement. The expectations were published in June 2023.
The case for action on nature
With more than half of the world’s GDP reliant on nature and its services, depleting natural capital creates significant operational, regulatory, litigation, and reputational risk for investors and businesses alike, and negative economic repercussions globally.
Nature Action 100 investor participants aim to drive greater corporate ambition and action in eight key sectors that are deemed to be systemically important in reversing nature and biodiversity loss by 2030, as they are considered to have significant impacts on nature and are heavily dependent on ecosystem services to function. The sectors include biotechnology and pharmaceuticals; chemicals; household and personal goods; consumer goods retail; food; food and beverage retail; forestry and paper; and metals and mining.
Investor participants engage companies individually or as part of engagement teams with other participating investors. Individuals and engagement teams will submit regular updates on their engagements.
Nature Action 100 company list
The 100 companies were selected based on their market capitalization within the key sectors and an analysis by the Finance for Biodiversity Foundation of companies with the highest impacts on nature. Companies in developed and emerging markets in these key sectors were also included in the list and will be a focus of engagements.
Nature Action 100 was conceived by a group of investors known as the Launching Investor Group. It was later formed as a global initiative in December 2022 by the Launching Investor Group, along with the Secretariat and Technical Advisory Group. The Launching Investor Group includes AXA Investment Managers, Columbia Threadneedle Investments, BNP Paribas Asset Management, Church Commissioners for England, Domini Impact Investments, Federated Hermes Limited, Karner Blue Capital, Robeco, Storebrand Asset Management, and Christian Brothers Investment Services.
Members of the Nature Action 100 Launching Investor Group provided the following comments:
Adam Kanzer, Head of Stewardship, Americas, BNP Paribas Asset Management, said: “As a member of the Nature Action 100 Launching Investor Group, we are gratified and energized by the strong response we’ve received from both asset managers and asset owners around the world. We believe this sends a very strong signal to the global markets – we must work together to reverse the systemic risk of nature loss. We have limited time, but working together with these 100 companies, we believe we can make a considerable difference. The real work begins now.”
Andrew Niebler, Co-Founder and Executive Vice President, Karner Blue Capital, said: “Humanity is often viewed as separate from – rather than as an integral part of – nature. This view has encouraged business conduct that degrades the ecosystem services that are the foundation of all human progress. We must rapidly transition our relationship with nature from one that is merely extractive to one that is reciprocal and builds a shared future for all life. Karner Blue Capital is proud to join like-minded investors participating in the Nature Action 100 initiative to ensure that companies are taking timely and necessary actions to protect and restore nature and ecosystems.”
Bruce Duguid, Head of Stewardship, EOS at Federated Hermes, said: “We are pleased to be a member of the Launching Investor Group of Nature Action 100. With mounting evidence of nature’s decline and the crucial role of natural ecosystems in sustaining business operations and livelihoods, biodiversity remains one of our key stewardship priorities. Participating in investor-led engagement initiatives complements our direct engagement with companies, helping to amplify key messages and drive outcomes. We look forward to being an active member of Nature Action 100 engagements.”
Emine Isciel, Head of Climate and Environment, Storebrand Asset Management, said: “As a founding partner of Nature Action 100, Storebrand is delighted to see the initiative continue to gather strong momentum and support. The economic case for biodiversity action is stronger than ever, and investors have a central role alongside policy makers in supporting companies successfully transition their business models in line with the goals of the Kunming- Montreal agreement.”
Liudmila Strakodonskaya, ESG Analyst, AXA Investment Managers, said: “The Nature Action 100 initiative’s selection of companies are considered as systemically important for protection of nature. All companies in the list have been identified as potentially the most impactful and representative of their respective sectors based on the best current data and knowledge provided by the partner organizations. We are delighted to see so many investors having joined the Nature Action 100 initiative ready to kick off engagements with the companies. We expect Nature Action 100 to drive fresh global momentum around biodiversity. As a founding member of Nature Action 100, we will continue our involvement by taking active part in this investor-led engagement.”
Mary Beth Gallagher, Director of Engagement, Domini Impact Investments, said: “Domini Impact Investments came to work on nature from our systems lens investing work focused on forests. It’s been encouraging to see the momentum and interest growing among investors and companies on biodiversity, culminating in the launch of Nature Action 100. We now move into action and engagement, to bring the initiative’s investor expectations to companies and mobilize meaningful corporate action to halt and reverse nature loss using a rights-based approach.”
Peter van der Werf, Head of Engagement, Robeco: “With Nature Action 100 ready to engage with the hundred most significant companies for nature and the Taskforce for Nature-related Financial Disclosure (TNFD) published, we now have all ingredients to accelerate the performance of companies in terms of measuring, managing and mitigating their contribution to biodiversity loss. Robeco recognizes that the challenge to bend the curve of nature loss can only be taken head on when investors, corporations, governments and civil society collaborate to set targets to protect biodiversity and engagement from investors in that process will be important to drive change.”
Rebecca Woods, RI Analyst, the Church Commissioners for England, said: “Protecting and preserving nature is essential to the well-being of our planet. We at the Church Commissioners are looking forward to engaging with companies as part of Nature Action 100 and hope that this investor-led initiative will support companies in transitioning their business models to focus more on their impact on nature and biodiversity.”
Ceres and IIGCC co-lead the Secretariat and Corporate Engagement Work Stream, and the Finance for Biodiversity Foundation and Planet Tracker co-lead the Technical Advisory Group. The Secretariat is responsible for administration, communications, fundraising, reporting and evaluation, and finances. The Technical Advisory Group is responsible for developing science-based investor guidance and tools to inform the initiative’s work and support investor engagements with companies.
Members of the Nature Action 100 Secretariat and Technical Advisory Group provided the following comments:
Mindy Lubber, CEO and President, Ceres, said: “We are proud to partner on this important initiative that will help catalyze urgent corporate action to address the nature crisis. We have seen the positive results that can happen when companies act to mitigate the material financial risk associated with nature loss, and we look forward to working with investors around the world to further accelerate nature action in key sectors.”
Stephanie Pfeifer, CEO, IIGCC, said: “I am delighted that after much good work by multiple partners that the engagement phase of Nature Action 100 has now kicked off. We believe that Nature Action 100 can be a platform for significant positive change and for raising corporate ambition on reversing nature and biodiversity loss and its economic consequences globally. I congratulate those 190 investors who have already joined and would welcome others who wish to follow suit.”
Anita de Horde, Executive Director, Finance for Biodiversity Foundation: “After years of preparations, driven by our committed Launching Investor Group, and extensive research to identify the sectors and companies with the greatest impact on biodiversity, we have now achieved a significant milestone with Nature Action 100. We are very excited that so many investors signed up for the next phase of Nature Action 100. We look forward to supporting the wider investment community with scientific-driven and technical information to drive significant progress in reversing nature loss.”
Robin Millington, CEO, Planet Tracker said: “As co-leader of the Technical Advisory Group, Planet Tracker is honored to be a part of this critical initiative and encouraged by the progress being made. We look forward to continuing collaboration with our Nature Action 100 partners and developing practical guidance for the investor community to drive the changes required in company practices. The value of nature in the world economy is becoming increasingly recognized by the business, financial, and political community. Reversing the current trend towards natural capital degradation and biodiversity loss is a key part of our mission.”
Even though direct engagement with companies started, interested investors can still participate in Nature Action 100. For more information on joining the initiative, visit here.