NLGPS is one of Britain’s largest pension funds
NLGPS joins Make My Money Matter pledge to align its £46bn investment portfolio with Paris Agreement’s 1.5C goal
The Northern Local Government Pension Scheme (NLGPS) has pledged to align its entire £46bn portfolio with the Paris Agreement’s goal to limit average temperature rise to 1.5C, and to explore the feasibility of setting a near-term 2030 investment decarbonisation target.
The pension fund – which pools together local government pensions from Greater Manchester, Merseyside, and West Yorkshire – yesterday said it would target a net zero carbon portfolio by 2050 and step up efforts to raise awareness of the potential contribution pensions can make to climate change.
NLGPS said it believed pension assets could be invested “to create a sustainable, better future without compromising returns”, and promised to help its members better understand the importance of knowing where their retirement savings are invested.
The pledge comes as part of NLGPS announcement yesterday that it has joined Make My Money Matter, the campaign spearheaded by writer and director Richard Curtis that is aiming to mobilise the UK’s £3tr of pension assets in support of the net zero transition post-pandemic.
NLGPS chair and Tameside borough councillor Ged Cooney said collaboration was “critical in driving positive change” across the industry. “NLGPS’ partnership with Make My Money Matter confirms our commitment to sustainable investment,” he said. “We are confident through our work with other likeminded investors and organisations, that a just transition to a zero-carbon economy is completely achievable.”
NLGPS is the latest in a string of UK pension funds to join the net zero club, following Aviva’s pledge earlier this month to transition all of its auto-enrolment default pension funds to net zero by 2050, and Nest’s promise earlier in the summer to do the same. BT’s pension fund also earlier this month committed to achieving a net zero emission portfolio by as soon as 2035.
Curtis, co-founder of the Make My Money Matter campaign, said he welcomed having on one of Britain’s largest public pension funds on board with the net zero agenda. “Combined with Nest, Aviva, BT and South Yorkshire, that’s £152bn saving to create a future we all want to retire into,” he said. “We’re facing an existential challenge – it’s time for all UK pension funds to make money matter and commit to halving their emissions by 2030 and going Net Zero by 2050.”
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