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Press Release

Willis Towers Watson joins Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative

Investments
Climate Risk and Resilience

July 6, 2021

Membership applies to $168 billion of assets under management across Willis Towers Watson’s discretionary asset management mandates

LONDON, July 6, 2021 – Willis Towers Watson has joined the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative, in its capacity as an OCIO provider.

This follows Willis Towers Watson’s previous net zero commitment across 100% of its discretionary assets around the world which is fully aligned with the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative objectives. As part of the Initiative, Willis Towers Watson will work in partnership with other stakeholders to enable and support the system level change required for the transition to a net zero economy.

Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative is an international group of asset managers, united by a commitment to the goal of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or sooner, in line with global efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C, and to supporting investing aligned with reaching that goal by 2050 or sooner.

Today’s announcement means that the combined signatories have now pledged a collective $43 trillion in assets under management will be subject to a detailed set of commitments to achieve these aims.

Chris Ford, Head of Investments at Willis Towers Watson, comments: “We believe that climate change will materially affect the global economy and capital markets. Integrating climate considerations in our decision making is a core part of how we act as responsible stewards of our clients’ assets, and we believe this will result in better risk-adjusted returns for our clients.

Integrating climate considerations in our decision making is a core part of how we act as responsible stewards of our clients’ assets”

Chris Ford | Head of Investments

“As investors, we also have an important role to play in shaping the system going forward – to steward a just transition to a low carbon economy. We recognise that collaboration will be essential for the investment industry to achieve clear and consistent real world outcomes for the benefit of its clients and so, as strong as our own Net Zero commitments already are, working with wider groups of investors is vital to achieving meaningful progress.”

Notes to editors

Baseline year for 2030 targets

Willis Towers Watson previously committed to a reduction of carbon emissions across its discretionary portfolios of 50% by 2030. It was envisaged that this target would be set relative to 2015 emissions and done in a way that is consistent with both the Paris Agreement and IIGCC’s Net Zero Investment Framework. Given emerging industry practice, and in line with the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative, Willis Towers Watson will look to use 2019 emissions as the baseline for its discretionary assets to ensure greater consistency with others, subject to market practice evolving further on this issue. It should be noted that as global absolute emissions did not change much between 2015 and 2019, a revised baseline of 2019 would not significantly change the 2030 target.

More information can be found here on Willis Towers Watson Investment’s commitment for its delegated investment portfolios earlier this year.

About Willis Towers Watson

Willis Towers Watson (NASDAQ: WLTW) is a leading global advisory, broking and solutions company that helps clients around the world turn risk into a path for growth. With roots dating to 1828, Willis Towers Watson has 45,000 employees serving more than 140 countries and markets. We design and deliver solutions that manage risk, optimise benefits, cultivate talent, and expand the power of capital to protect and strengthen institutions and individuals. Our unique perspective allows us to see the critical intersections between talent, assets and ideas – the dynamic formula that drives business performance. Together, we unlock potential.

About the Net Zero Asset Managers initiative

The Net Zero Asset Managers initiative is a group of international asset managers committed to supporting the goal of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or sooner, in line with global efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C; and to supporting investing aligned with net zero emissions by 2050 or sooner. The initiative is managed globally by six founding partners: Asia Investor Group on Climate Change (AIGCC), CDP, Ceres, Investor Group on Climate Change (IGCC), Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC) and Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). The initiative is also endorsed by The Investor Agenda, of which the investor networks are all founding partners. For further information, please visit www.netzeroassetmanagers.org.

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