Transition Pathway Initiative

Church Commissioners – in the House of Commons on 25th June 2020.

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Photo of Barry Gardiner Barry Gardiner Labour, Brent North

What assessment the Church Commissioners have made of the effectiveness of the transition pathway initiative managed by the Church of England pension fund trustees.

Photo of Andrew Selous Andrew Selous The Second Church Estates Commissioner

The Church is proud of its role in developing the transition pathway initiative, which enables asset owners to identify which companies are implementing strategies in line with the Paris climate agreement. It is supported by investors, with over $20 trillion of assets under management, so it is now possible to distinguish between the high-carbon companies that are transitioning and those that are not.

Photo of Barry Gardiner Barry Gardiner Labour, Brent North

I am very grateful for that answer, and congratulate the Church’s pension trustees on their innovation and vision. The TPI has worked with major global companies to reduce their emissions and has established a framework for pension funds to move towards net zero emissions. Can the hon. Gentleman tell me whether our own parliamentary pension fund is able to sign up to the initiative, and what more the Church could do to encourage other pension funds to join that $20 trillion of assets?

Photo of Andrew Selous Andrew Selous The Second Church Estates Commissioner

Each set of pension trustees has its own responsibilities, but I note that the Pensions Minister, the Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, my hon. Friend Guy Opperman, has said it is important that all pension fund trustees understand the risks and opportunities posed to their investments by climate change. I am always delighted when others follow where the Church leads.