Leading global insurer AXA, reaffirms its commitment to sustainability as it joins the fight against climate change.
Its chief executive, Thomas Buberl announced several initiatives and decisions that are to be set in motion in the areas of investments, divestments, and insurance.
“As a global insurer and investor, we know that we have a key role to play and are proud to have taken these decisions and to have inspired others,” said Buberl. “In the spirit of the Paris Agreement, we want to accelerate our commitment and confirm our leadership in the fight against global warming.”
In the investments front, AXA aims to reach 12 billion euros in green investments by 2020, which is four times the 2015 achieved target of 3 billion euros. This accelerated target is twice as high as the recommendation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which is to invest 1 percent of assets into green and clean technology by 2020.
In the area of Divestments, the insurance firm decided two years ago to divest 500 million euros from the coal industry, targeting companies, which derive over 50 percent of their revenues from coal. Today, AXA has decided to increase its divestment to a record fivefold or 2.4 billion euros, this time targeting companies that derive more than 30 percent of their revenues from coal, have a coal-based energy mix that exceeds 30 percent, actively build new coal plants, or produce more than 20 million tons of coal per year.
Similarly, the company also announced the divestment of over 700 billion euros from the main oil sand producers and associated pipelines, signaling the discontinuation of investments in these businesses.
In the field of Insurance, AXA said that as a group, it would no longer be insuring new coal construction projects as well as main oil sands and associated pipelines. It has also partnered recently with the International Finance Corporation in spearheading an innovative US$500 million fund to support climate related infrastructure projects in emerging countries.