Investors with $11 trillion back plan to reform mining industry

Stock image.

Some of the world’s biggest investors are throwing their weight behind a plan to reform the mining industry so it can safely meet the growing demand for minerals and metals needed for the green transition.

Investors overseeing a combined $11 trillion, including California State Teachers’ Retirement System and Legal & General Investment Management, are among the first to back the Global Investor Commission on Mining 2030, according to a statement on Wednesday.

The investor group, which was convened this year with the help of the United Nations, said its goal is to “define a vision for a socially and environmentally responsible mining sector” and introduce a set of global standards for the industry covering issues from child labor to biodiversity loss.

Expanding wind, solar and electric-vehicle production will require considerably more minerals and metals than combustion-powered technology. And that’s forcing ESG investors to take a fresh and more critical look at the mining industry, which has been linked to a long list of environmental and social harms from child labor and sexual assault to rivers of toxic sludge and mercury poisoning.

“Mining has never been an easy industry: However, if the energy transition is going to be successful, a significant increase in the supply of sustainably mined minerals is required,” said George Cheveley, a portfolio manager at Ninety One, which also backs the commission. “Only by engaging with the mining industry on multiple levels will we ensure that these minerals can be accessed whilst taking into account the many different stakeholders.”

Other investors to support the initiative include the UK’s Aviva Plc, Dutch pension fund APG-IM and Canada’s Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec.

“The Mining 2030 Commission presents a unique opportunity to step back and consider how investors value, steward and invest for the long term in a sector whose time horizons are multi-decadal and often at odds with short-term investment pressure,” said Adam Matthews, chair of the commission and chief responsible investment officer of the Church of England Pensions Board.

(By Alastair Marsh)


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *