Investors demand oil, coal and power companies assess climate risks.

Mindy Lubber & Mark Fulton in the Guardian: “…. it’s not just students and activists clamouring for radical changes; leading corporations and investors are now adding their voices to the chorus calling for stronger action to reduce our fossil fuel dependency.” “As the world approaches irreversible and catastrophic levels of climate change, there is a growing urgency to diversify our energy sources and leave much of the world’s remaining fossil fuel reserves in the ground. Oil and coal companies must recognise that it is in their best interest to plan for a low-carbon future. Consumers demand it, their investors demand it, and it’s the smartest business strategy – because the world is changing.
….Chinese citizens are protesting “apocalyptic” coal pollution that is shutting down airports and entire cities. A recent Climate Asia survey showed that 78% of Chinese people believe climate change is happening. On the other side of the world, at least 84% of people in US states recently hit by drought or sea-level rise say that global warming is happening, according to a new Stanford University study. Meanwhile, student activists around the world are calling on university endowments to divest from fossil fuel companies.
….Just last month, a new and powerful set of market actors – some of the world’s largest pension funds and money managers – publicly recognised the connection between their financial assets and the decisions being made by fossil fuel executives. As part of this effort, 70 global investors with collective assets totalling $3tn (£1.85tn) made the first ever joint request to the world’s 45 largest oil, coal and power companies – including Exxon, BP and Arch Coal – to assess the financial risks that climate change and these other trends pose to your business plans. The investors, co-ordinated by Ceres and the Carbon Tracker Initiative, sent letters to the companies this fall requesting detailed responses by early next year.
“We would like to understand (the company’s) reserve exposure to the risks associated with current and probable future policies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050,” the investors wrote in their letter to oil and gas companies. “We would also like to understand what options there are for (the company) to manage these risks by, for example, reducing the carbon intensity of its assets, divesting its most carbon intensive assets, diversifying its business by investing in low-carbon energy sources or returning capital to shareholders.”