Net-zero means water, too, for corporations serious about climate risk. Investors and customers are pushing food, apparel, energy, chemicals, pharmaceuticals and mining companies to address water security along with greenhouse gas emissions in their strategies for a net-zero economy. Indeed, water use is responsible for 10% of global emissions; those major industries account for 70% of the world’s water use. Ford Motor Co. and Anglo American have set goals of net-zero water withdrawals, with the mining giant tying executive compensation to freshwater reduction targets. Nissan Motor aims to eliminate wastewater discharges. “Companies need to invest to address these risks, minimize their impacts, and build resilience to mounting water-related risks such as water scarcity, flooding and chronic pollution,” writes Cate Lamb of CDP in an analysis of the water-related disclosures of nearly 3,000 companies. The business case: The companies tallied $301 billion in potential water risks – five times more than the $55 billion in investment needed to mitigate those risks – and $711 billion in water-related savings and revenues.
Dealflow: Follow the Money
Southern Opportunity and Resilience Fund to back small businesses in COVID recovery. The fund will increase the supply of affordable capital for small businesses and nonprofits in 15 southern states in the U.S. SOAR will offer flexible loans of up to $100,000 to enterprises with less than 50 full-time employees. “The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated an already uneven recovery from the Great Recession,” said LISC’s George Ashton. The fund “will tackle these issues head-on by addressing structural barriers to economic opportunity.” Arranged by Calvert Impact Capital and managed byLISC, the fund aims to raise $150 million. Capital One, Microsoft, Heron Foundation and Fidelity Charitable have providedearly grants and loans.
Agents of Impact: Follow the Talent
Margaret Chinwe Anadu becomes global head of sustainability and impact and chair of the urban investment group at Goldman Sachs Asset Management… Greg Konieczny and Kunal Desai, both ex- of Mobius Capital Partners, join GIB Asset Management as head of global emerging markets equities and portfolio manager, respectively… GenderSmart Investing and VC Include launch Capital Connect, a series of virtual showcases connecting gender-lens investors and funds (use code ImpactAlpha2021 for a 30% discount).
“It’s a great time for new entrants, but for those of us who’ve been doing this for a while it is equally urgent to raise our game right and to not get complacent,” said Margot Brandenburg of the Ford Foundation.