Foundations

Foundations are institutions which own assets and make investments targeted at achieving a social mission. Examples include charitable funds and trusts. Foundations can make grants as well as equity or debt investments, and typically fund projects early in the investment life-cycle.

Responding entities tracked


Criteria

Responding Foundations Tracked

Institutions by number

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Institutions that are joining the “Paris race,” by making a commitment to any level of action under any of the three dimensions (Targets, Integration, Flows). Depending on which Criteria is selected, this trend shows the number of institutions or the total assets they represent (USD billion).

How many institutions are joining the “Paris race”, by making a commitment to any level of action under any of the three dimensions. Depending on which is selected, this trend shows the number of institutions or the total assets they represent (USD billion).

The number of foundations reporting some response to climate change was small and stable until 2019, while 2020 saw a nearly five-fold increase to 34 institutions. Foundations performed better on targets and strategic measures than integration, and more reported misaligned portfolios than primary investments. Reporting foundations could be linked to only USD 4.2 billion in assets, compared to a total landscape of foundations in the UK estimated over USD 86 billion – this is more likely to represent data gaps and inconsistencies than the absence of major players.

Trends By Dimension


Criteria

Targets

Distribution

Institutions by number

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Distribution of integration scores for the selected institution category. Gradations in each bar represent different levels of response (ranging 0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”). The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Distribution of targets scores for the selected institution category. Gradations in each bar represent different levels of response (ranging 0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”). The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Reliability

Target drivers

*based on average nr or AUM of reporting entities in the last 5 years

AVERAGE SCORE

Avg by number of institutions

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The green line indicates the average integration score (0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”) for the selected institution category. The average across institutions can be calculated as simple average of scores or weighted by the assets of covered entities. The dotted line indicates the score of the single institution emerging as the category’s “early leader.”

The green line indicates the average targets score (0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”) for the selected institution category. The average across institutions can be calculated as simple average of scores or weighted by the assets of covered entities. The dotted line indicates the score of the single institution emerging as the category’s “early leader.”

Reliability

Target drivers

*based on average nr or AUM of reporting entities in the last 5 years

At the strategic level, foundations reporting in 2020 set a new precedent for a more developed response, where a small handful of institutions showed an initial response between 2015 and 2019. Out of 31 responding institutions, 27 scored between 30 and 70. This brought the average score for the category up to 32.

There is still margin for improvement for the average institution. In 2019 and 2020, Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust was an early leader, scoring 58. Tied in second place with 33 were a large number of institutions. Raising awareness and adopting divestment goals played a larger role in determining the overall target score: transparent disclosure of divestment targets started in 2020 with 27 foundations.

Integration

Distribution

Institutions by number

Chart Bar

Distribution of integration scores for the selected institution category. Gradations in each bar represent different levels of response (ranging 0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”). The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Distribution of targets scores for the selected institution category. Gradations in each bar represent different levels of response (ranging 0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”). The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Reliability

Integration drivers

*based on average nr or AUM of reporting entities in the last 5 years

AVERAGE SCORE

Avg by number of institutions

Chart Bar

The green line indicates the average integration score (0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”) for the selected institution category. The average across institutions can be calculated as simple average of scores or weighted by the assets of covered entities. The dotted line indicates the score of the single institution emerging as the category’s “early leader.”

The green line indicates the average targets score (0-100 from “Initial response” to “Advanced response”) for the selected institution category. The average across institutions can be calculated as simple average of scores or weighted by the assets of covered entities. The dotted line indicates the score of the single institution emerging as the category’s “early leader.”

Reliability

Integration drivers

*based on average nr or AUM of reporting entities in the last 5 years

The number of foundations introducing measures in their decision-making is small and has been increasing incrementally. Only 7 foundations reported in 2020. While from 2015 to 2018 foundations were at the initial response stage, 2019 and 2020 saw new reporting institutions making a developed response.

Two early leaders are Esmee Fairbairn Foundation and Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust, scoring 37 since 2019. These two foundations are good examples for their peers to follow, since they have adopted climate risk disclosure and emissions reporting. Across all foundations, the key drivers are commitments to shareholder engagement and climate progress reporting.

Flows

INVESTMENT TRENDS

USDm *2019-2020 data is incomplete

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Bars show the volume of transactions in primary low-carbon and climate-resilient investments, and green bond issuances. Figures are always expressed in USD million.

Sources: BNEF, CBI, CPI, NAZCA, RAN

Reliability

Flows drivers

*based on average nr or AUM of reporting entities in the last 5 years

PORTFOLIO ALIGNMENT

Institutions by number

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Distribution of institutions based on the assessment of the share of their investment portfolios exposed to climate-critical sectors as either aligned or misaligned with Paris goals. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: FFD, FinanceMap, TPI

Reliability

Flows drivers

*based on average nr or AUM of reporting entities in the last 5 years

Foundations provided just shy of USD 90 million for climate action in 2018, the most recent year with available data. However, this has not led to aligned portfolios: out of 26 institutions tracked in 2020, only one has an aligned portfolio: the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund.

TRENDS BY INDICATORS


Targets indicators


Awareness of climate change

awareness of climate change

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have announced a clear commitment to addressing climate change through their activities, thereby raising awareness for action on climate risks or goals. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: PRI, TPI or activity tracked under other indicators (adoption of mitigation targets, investment and divestment goals, activity to influence actors in the system).

Reliability

Adoption of quantified mitigation targets

Adoption of quantified mitigation targets

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have set clear targets for climate action (primarily reducing their emissions), whether those are quantitative targets or general, and whether they are disclosed transparently. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: SBTi, ERI, NAZCA, WMB, TPI, NZAOA, PRB

Reliability

Mitigation targets by type

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have set a target, by type of target adopted. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: SBTi, NAZCA

Reliability

Adoption of investment goals

ADOPTION OF INVESTMENT GOALS

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have set and disclosed clear, accountable and measurable targets to provide a volume of financial services and investments for climate action. The distribution can be based on the institutions by number or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: WRI

Reliability

AGGREGATE INVESTMENT GOALS

USDm

Chart - How to read

Bars show the cumulative volume of investments that institutions have committed to in goals at the organizational level. Figures are always expressed in USD millions.

Sources: WRI

Reliability

Adoption of divestment goals

Adoption of divestment goals

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have announced a clear target to divest from fossil fuels, with a clearly defined scope. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: DivestInvest, FFD

Reliability

Adoption of institutional strategy on climate change

Adoption of institutional strategy on climate change

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have set an institution-level strategy to incorporate climate change risks and opportunities, including investment or decarbonization plans. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: PDC, PRI, TPI, CAFI, PRB

Reliability

Influencing actors in the system

Influencing actors in the system

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that are engaging with government and industry on climate change. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: InfluenceMap, World Economic Forum / Mission Possible, BEI, IA, SAS, PSI, PRI, NZAOA, WMB, TPI

Reliability

Integration indicators


Disclosure of climate risks

Disclosure of climate risks

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have committed to the disclosure of climate risks and, if so, whether the level of disclosure has been assessed and can be considered sufficient. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: AODP, PRI, TCFD, CA 100+, WMB

Reliability

Emissions reporting

Emissions reporting

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have committed to disclose their emissions, and whether there is evidence that emissions are already been tracked internally. Emissions that are verified or cover the full range of activities (scope 1, 2, and 3) are here considered of higher quality. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: TPI, PCAF, PRI

Reliability

Climate progress reporting

Climate progress reporting

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that are committing to provide, or providing regular updates on measures implemented, and actions taken.

Distribution can be based alternatively on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USDbn).

Sources: SSEI, CAFI, PSI, WRI, PRB, NZAOA, WMB, PRI

Reliability

Carbon price

CARBON PRICE

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have committed to an internal carbon price to inform their decision making, have already adopted one, or transparently disclosed one to the public. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: CDP, CPLC, TPI, WMB, NAZCA

Reliability

CARBON PRICE RANGE ADOPTED

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that adopted and disclosed a carbon price, by actual carbon price range. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion), while the carbon price range is expressed in USD/tCO2.

Sources: CDP

Reliability

Climate scenario tools

Climate scenario tools

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that integrated temperature and climate scenario tools to support decision making, and the level of sophistication of the scenario used. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: PRI, TPI

Reliability

Climate risk due diligence

Climate risk due diligence

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have adopted internal climate risk due diligence and related procedures, distinguishing between organizations that so far committed to do so and those that have already put measures in place, and the degree at which they are integrated across the operational and strategic levels of the organization. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: PRI, TPI, CAFI

Reliability

Climate-related accountability

Climate-related accountability

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have adopted measures for climate accountability, looking at the extent of accountability and incentives for chief and operations-level staff, and at the existence of dedicated staff responsible for coordinating climate action. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: PRI, TPI, SSEI

Reliability

Shareholder / client engagement

Shareholder / client engagement

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions that have committed to engaging shareholders or clients on climate action, or that are taking the necessary steps by mandating climate reporting requirements or through active ownership. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: PRI, PRB, SSEI, 2Di FM, CA 100+

Reliability

Flows indicators


Investment trends

Investment trends

USDm *2019-2020 data is incomplete

Chart - How to read

Bars show the volume of transactions in primary low-carbon and climate-resilient investments, and green bond issuances. Figures are always expressed in USD million.

Sources: BNEF, CBI, CPI, NAZCA, RAN

Reliability

Portfolio alignment

PORTFOLIO ALIGNMENT

Institutions by number

Chart - How to read

Distribution of institutions based on the assessment of the share of their investment portfolios exposed to climate-critical activities as either aligned or misaligned with Paris goals. The distribution can be based on the number of institutions or their underlying assets (USD billion).

Sources: FFD, FinanceMap, TPI

Reliability

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