Friday 8 October 2021 11:17 am

HSBC's £36bn pension scheme pledges to be net zero by 2050 at the latest

HSBC’s pension scheme, one of the largest corporate pension schemes in the UK, has pledged to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050 or sooner.

In the run up to COP26, an increasing number of activists have zeroed in on fossil-fuel investing pension funds and wider financial institutions like HSBC and Lloyds for carbon-heavy investments.

Under the bank’s new promises, the scheme, which is comprised of around £36bn in assets, will have all of its corporate bond and equity investments be “fully aligned” to the goals of the Paris Agreement by 2030.

The 2015 Paris Agreement aims to keep global temperatures below 1.5C, but slashing greenhouse gases.

The bank’s pension pot has also outlined an interim emission cutting target of 50 per cent by 2030. Meanwhile, it intends to bolster sustainability engagement and stewardship among the scheme’s asset managers.

“The trustee recognises the increased urgency with which climate change needs to be tackled and in it playing an active role in supporting the drive to decarbonise the economy,” pension scheme trustee board chair Russell Picot said.

“The time is right to take the next step to further embed climate change actions into our future plans for the benefit of our members.”