We have identified several key areas of focus: climate change and the energy transition and human, community, labour rights (for example modern slavery and workplace safety) as well as investing in the real economy. These areas of focus represent systemic risks, are aligned with our members' interests, and are topics where we believe we can measure, engage and report on our progress.
Climate change and the energy transition
We believe that climate change is one of the most significant challenges we face as a society today, and that tackling climate change needs to be done collaboratively with a focus on real world impact. Our aim ultimately is to support the energy transition, and in doing so, help ensure the transition is as orderly as possible so that our members' benefits are protected.
We have developed a Climate Change Position Statement (PDF), which helps guide the integration of climate change considerations within our broader investment framework. We have a range of climate change goals which include:
- Net zero emissions by 2050
- Contribute to a 45% reduction in real world emissions by 2030
- 1% of our total funds under management (FUM) is available to be allocated to climate related investments
- Engage with our highest Australian listed equity companies who contribute most to our carbon footprint to improve their responses to climate change
These goals currently cover over 70% of our portfolio and work continues to expand our coverage to include additional asset classes. Find out more detailed information about our climate change goals. We have previously been certified as carbon neutral for FY19, FY20, and FY21 and you can view our previous carbon neutral certificates.
Our third Climate Change Roadmap (PDF) sets out our key climate change activities to 2024. In line with this roadmap we are in the process of developing a decarbonisation strategy for our operational emissions with the goal of aligning our actions to real world decarbonisation.
Our progress towards our climate change goals
Each year we disclose how we’re measuring and reporting metrics and targets for the climate change roadmap under the Task Force for Climate-related Financial Disclosures in our Responsible Investment Supplement (PDF).
Human, community and labour rights
We report against the Modern Slavery Act, which aims to increase business awareness of the risks of modern slavery in the production and supply chains of Australian goods and services and work to minimise the risk of modern slavery in our operations and supply chains. This includes engaging with likeminded investors and companies about modern slavery risk management. You can view our most recent Modern Slavery Statement.
Safety disclosures and practices provide insights into a company’s operational performance and culture. Safety considerations form part of the due diligence process for relevant assets, risk committee reporting, and our engagement with companies, which helps inform how we vote at company General Meetings. Not only is this important to understand when making investment decisions, but it also supports our members and the industries in which they operate.
Poor management of cultural heritage issues and relationships by companies can increase the risk of legal costs, project delays, regulatory risk and reputational harm, impacting our members' investments. Cultural heritage risk management and engagement with First Nations People are matters that apply to any company that operates on cultural lands. We chair the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors’ (ACSI) Working Group on Rights and Cultural Heritage Risk Management, which aims to create tools for companies to improve cultural heritage and First Nations People engagement.
Investing in the real economy
With a long history in the building and construction industry and through our wholly owned entity Cbus Property, we own one of the most sustainable commercial property portfolios in the country as rated by NABERS.*
In aligning with our members’ interests, embedding strong ESG practices in the built environment, including the development of sustainable building and construction practices, can generate long-term, sustainable value and positively impact our members’ quality of life in retirement.
In addition, Cbus Property's office portfolio achieved net zero carbon status in 2022, eight years ahead of their 2030 target, as certified by the Climate Active Carbon Neutral Building Standard; and they again received global recognition in the annual Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) Real Estate Assessment.
*Cbus Property has been recognised as an industry leader in the 2023 NABERS Sustainable Portfolios Index, which calculates a NABERS Portfolio rating for Cbus Property’s office portfolio.
Investing in renewables infrastructure
We have invested in several wind and solar energy opportunities, powering hundreds of thousands of households with clean energy. We also invest in renewables and low emissions technology in Australia and abroad.
Social and affordable housing
We provide investment funding to support social and affordable housing including the construction of new dwellings. This funding not only supports new home developments for vulnerable Australians but also supports the economy through job creation. We are actively engaged with a range of stakeholders in the social and affordable space to find more ways to attract institutional investment into the sector noting any investment that we make must be in the best financial interests of our members.
Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs)
Through our commitment to our members and the industries they work in, being an employer of choice, and engaging and advocating across our key responsible investment focus areas (including climate change) means that each year we contribute to a range of SDGs.
The SDGs where we believe can contribute are: