What is the Clean Economy?
Each day, more than 200,000 additional people populate the planet1 , further challenging how far natural resources must stretch to sustain human life. Clean Tech companies strive to create genuine solutions to help address these challenges.
The Clean Economy is the rapidly growing universe of companies whose activities improve resource sustainability, support the energy transition (from fossil-based to zero-carbon energy production and storage) or address the issue of water scarcity.
Why consider investing in the Clean Economy?
Consumers are demanding more of companies and governments as concerns over the sustainability of human civilisation on earth deepen. Consequently, we are seeing the growth of Clean Tech investing, as more companies embrace the circular economy and respond to the need for change.
We believe businesses that are prepared to adapt should have a sustainable, competitive advantage by reducing their input costs over the long-term, and, they could see significant growth potential in the decades to come. We believe that this could provide investors with exciting, new investment opportunities in companies that should stand the test of time.
The world is changing, and we have identified three reasons why we believe now is the time for the Clean Economy:
- Environmental pressure is rising: In recent years the rising potential for human suffering and huge economic loss due to climate-related disasters has been driving more urgency than ever to manage carbon emissions and limit global warming. A lot has happened since nearly every nation on earth committed to a low carbon future by signing the Paris Agreement in 2015 but there’s still a long way to go and the transition to a low carbon future requires carefully balanced social and economic transformation.
- Awareness is rising: Awareness of the impact of pollution is being increasingly driven by governments, consumers and corporates. There is strong regulatory support across the EU (Green Deal), US (Biden's administration) and even China (carbon neutral commitment by 2060).
- Action is rising: Consumers are changing their consumption habits at a faster pace, while companies are investing massively in new clean technologies to avoid the rising cost of taxes and penalties from emissions and to guard against the impact of potential non-financial risks arising from a climate crisis.
These three combined are encouraging governments and companies to reassess their policies and start to implement meaningful change and invest in the circular economy and new Clean Tech.
We aim to enable our clients to invest in the companies and projects leading the transition to a more sustainable world.
Our Clean Economy strategy
Our approach to investing in the Clean Economy seeks to identify high-quality, growth-oriented companies operating across one of four key investment areas impacted by the finite amount of natural resources. We believe these are the areas which will provide innovative, new investment opportunities:
- Low Carbon Transport: Across the world, the demand for sustainable transport is increasing, providing investors with ample investment opportunities in electric vehicles, battery technologies and emission reduction systems.
- Smart Energy: The necessity and demand for greener homes is growing, helping to provide the impetus and resources for the development of energy efficient technologies. This is creating investment opportunities in renewables, greener homes and efficient factories.
- Agriculture & Food Industry: Companies are exploring new ways to meet the growing demand of rising populations while limiting the use of scarce water and land. This is providing copious opportunities to invest in firms that are developing food and agricultural technologies.
- Natural Resource Preservation: Public opinion is shifting and putting pressure on companies to better manage supply chains - and is providing investment opportunities in companies who are mitigating their environmental damage and evolving their practices.
We only invest in companies which demonstrably generate a share of their revenues from the clean economy through an investment approach combining fundamental stock selection with a proprietary impact framework.
We aim to provide transparent and measurable impact metrics focused on UN Sustainable Development Goals contribution towards environmental and societal issues, including:
- 6 - Clean water and sanitation (Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all)
- 7 - Affordable and clean energy (Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all)
- 11 - Sustainable cities and communities (Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable)
- 12 - Responsible consumption and production (Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns)
- 13 - Climate action (Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts)
- 14 - Life below water (Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development)
The targeting of specific SDGs does not imply the endorsement of the United Nations of AXA Investment Managers, its products or services, or of its planned activities and does not constitute, explicitly or implicitly, a recommendation for an investment strategy.
To help people invest in the companies that are embracing these changes, we have adapted our internal research capabilities to incorporate the five main trends that we believe represent the future for long-term fundamental growth investing.