IN FOCUS6-8 min read

An investor’s guide to climate change: the simple and surprising facts

Most of us have heard about global warming and its effects, but how much do we really know about how human activity is harming the environment?

13/05/2021
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Read full reportAn investor’s guide to climate change: the simple and surprising facts
10 pages2090 KB

Authors

Anastasia Petraki
Investment Director, Sustainability

Climate change is real, it is being driven by record and still-rising greenhouse gas emissions and human activity is mostly responsible for it. The impact of global warming is becoming uncomfortably tangible.

Every year, more and more people around the world feel its effects through recurring extreme weather events that harm life and property and dislocate populations.

The good news is that we are concerned enough for Greta Thunberg to be immediately recognisable around the world. The bad news is that we are not scared enough. Despite all the policy action in the last decades, greenhouse gas emissions are still increasing and the planet is still warming.

Perhaps the key lies in climate change literacy. Most of us have heard about global warming and its effects but how much do we really know about how human activity is harming the environment? For example, did you know that:

  • Despite the drop in greenhouse gas emissions due to Covid-induced lockdowns worldwide in 2020, the concentration of greenhouse gases now stands at record levels (Source: World Meteorological Organisation)?
  • We are on course for a 3.6 degrees Celsius increase instead of the 1.5 degrees envisaged by the Paris Agreement (Source: Schroders Climate Progress Dashboard)?
  • Our use of cars has almost five times the carbon footprint of flying (Source: Our World in Data)?
  • If all the plastic we have discarded in the world were cling film, we would be able to wrap the whole planet one and a half times in it (Source: Mike Berners-Lee, How bad are bananas?, 2020)?
  • Chocolate has almost the same carbon footprint as beef (for dairy) the main culprit being the land use impact of growing cocoa (Source: Schroders)?
  • The fashion industry accounts for 10% of annual global emissions and is a major driver of deforestation and soil degradation (Source: European Parliament Think Tank)?
  • Our use of phones, computers, tablets, TVs, networks and even cryptocurrencies accounts for 2.5% of global emissions (Source: Mike Berners-Lee, How bad are bananas?, 2020)?

This paper puts together some facts about climate change that can help all of us better understand climate change and the role that human activities play. It also makes some suggestions about actions that we can take as individuals to manage our carbon footprint and explains what Schroders is doing as an investor and a company.

Reading this may get scary at times but please do not look away!

Read full reportAn investor’s guide to climate change: the simple and surprising facts
10 pages2090 KB

Issued in the Channel Islands by Cazenove Capital which is part of the Schroders Group and is a trading name of Schroders (C.I.) Limited, licensed and regulated by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission for banking and investment business; and regulated by the Jersey Financial Services Commission. Nothing in this document should be deemed to constitute the provision of financial, investment or other professional advice in any way. Past performance is not a guide to future performance. The value of an investment and the income from it may go down as well as up and investors may not get back the amount originally invested. This document may include forward-looking statements that are based upon our current opinions, expectations and projections. We undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements. Actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements. All data contained within this document is sourced from Cazenove Capital unless otherwise stated.

 

Authors

Anastasia Petraki
Investment Director, Sustainability

Topics

Cazenove Capital is a trading name of Schroders (C.I.) Ltd which is licensed under the Banking Supervision (Bailiwick of Guernsey) Law 2020 and the Protection of Investors (Bailiwick of Guernsey) Law 2020, as amended in the conduct of banking and investment business. Registered address at Regency Court, Glategny Esplanade, St. Peter Port, Guernsey GY1 3UF, (No.24546) . Schroders (C.I.) Limited, Jersey Branch is regulated by the Jersey Financial Services Commission in the conduct of investment business. Registered address at IFC1, Esplanade, St Helier, Jersey, JE2 3BX, (No.31076).

The value of your investments and the income received from them can fall as well as rise. You may not get back the amount you invested.