氣候變化與陸地……綠色農業需要綠色金融的支持 / Climate Change and Land .. Greener Farming Calls for Greener Finance

Alexandra Tracy, 香港地球之友綠色金融顧問 / Green Finance Advisor of Friends of the Earth (HK)

政府間氣候變化專門委員會(IPCC)本月發布的「氣候變化與陸地特別報告」把焦點放在我們如何使用(往往是濫用)自然資源上。

根據IPCC的數據,全球農業、森林砍伐和土地轉換產生的氣候變化影響佔溫室氣體總排放量近25%。大陸板塊為天然碳匯,但開伐森林、農業和可觀察到的天氣因素意味著它們的二氧化碳吸收能力可能會大幅降低。

正當我們需要保護地球上自然環境的同時,不斷增長的全球人口急需更多的土地賴以生存。大多數政府於二十一世紀面臨的最大挑戰之一,是要同時在政策上平衡兼顧供養人民需求以及應對氣候變化的迫切性。

事實上,有些行動能有效地幫助解決以上急切的需求。減少森林砍伐以及重建退化的生態系統可能是最重要的行動,尤其亞馬遜目前的情況已令人沮喪。幾乎同樣緊迫的是,必須在整個食物供應鏈中減少浪費,原來由農場到超級市場有超過四分之一的食物被浪費了,食物生產過程實在有需要變得更具可持續性。

世界資源研究所最近發表一份名為「創建可持續糧食未來」的報告,指出技術創新所提供的機會和農業實踐變革,足以在2050年前養活近100億人口,同時又能達到氣候減碳目標。而這將涉及提高農業生產力、管理需求和減少浪費(不單是放棄肉類),以及減少生產鏈中產生的溫室氣體排放。與此同時,保護自然生態系統和人工造林將非常重要。

金融在綠色農業中能發揮甚麼作用?

綠色金融世界的最新發展為綠色及可持續性貸款,貸款甚至其產生的利息回報,成就借貸雙方層面攜手實現可持續性表現目標。綠色債券則有所不同,籌集到的資金可用於一般企業用途,而不僅僅是特定的綠色項目,但借款人必須每年量化並報告其環境或可持續性收益。

農業生產商與商品交易商是加入綠色貸款結構的先導者之一。Danone、Louis Dreyfus和歐洲的Gunvor集團等國際企業,及後來才加入的一些亞洲主要企業,都希望通過綠色貸款,盡力達到以更可持續的方式進行生產並帶來更便宜的資本成本。

2017年,新加坡控股公司豐益國際與荷蘭銀行ING達成了1.5億美元的綠色貸款共識,是棕櫚油行業中的第一宗此類交易。一家重要的區域性商品交易商Olam International立即跟隨,,很快便進行了亞洲首宗可持續發展表現掛鉤貸款,15家銀行共同向該公司提供資金。

而最近,於今年7月,中國最大的食品貿易公司中糧集團簽署21億美元貸款,成為中國第一宗以及全球商品交易商中最大的一宗可持續貸款。利率將與包括供應鏈透明度在內的指標掛鉤,以確保貸款不會涉及森林砍伐。

談到這宗貸款對公司業務的影響,中糧集團國際首席財務官吴竞認為,「未來農產品的交易需求只能透過可持續性採購才得以實現」。綠色金融對於可持續發展的明確表現,將有助改變農業部門,並確保綠色金融能在我們的長遠未來中發揮作用。

“Climate Change and Land”, published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) this month, puts the focus clearly on how we use – and often misuse – natural resources.

The climate change impact of agriculture, deforestation and land conversion around the world accounts for nearly 25 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions, according to the IPCC.  Land masses are natural carbon sinks, but deforestation, agriculture and observable weather factors mean that their carbon dioxide absorption capacity may be significantly reduced.

While the world needs to maintain its natural environment, the growing global population needs ever more land to feed itself.  Managing the policy trade offs between feeding the people, on the one hand, and addressing the urgency of climate change, on the other, is becoming one of the greatest challenges for governments in the twenty first century.

But there are actions that could help to meet that imperative.  Reducing deforestation, together with action to regenerate degraded ecosystems, is perhaps the most important – the current situation in the Amazon is a cause for dismay.  Almost as pressing, however, is the need to reduce food waste along the entire supply chain, from the farm gate to the supermarket: over a quarter of food produced is not consumed.  And the production of food itself needs to become more sustainable.

A recent report from the World Resources Institute, “Creating a Sustainable Food Future”, highlights opportunities for technological innovation and changes in farming practice that could feed nearly 10 billion people by the year 2050 – while also meeting climate goals.  This would involve raising agricultural productivity, managing demand and reducing waste (not just giving up meat) and reducing greenhouse gas emissions generated in the production chain.  At the same time, natural ecosystems protection and reforestation will be essential.

What role can finance play in greening agriculture ?

The new stars of the green finance world are green and sustainability loans, which link the interest rate payable to meeting sustainability performance targets.  Unlike green bonds, the money raised can be used for general corporate purposes, not just specific green projects, but the borrower must quantify and report its environmental or sustainability benefits each year.

Agricultural producers and commodity traders have been some of the first movers in signing up to green loan structures.  Global players such as Danone, Louis Dreyfus and Gunvor Group in Europe have latterly been joined by major players in Asia, looking to leverage their efforts to produce more sustainably into a cheaper cost of capital.

In 2017, Wilmar International in Singapore agreed a US$150 million green loan with Dutch bank ING, which was the first deal of its kind in the palm oil industry.  Olam International, a substantial regional commodities trader, soon followed with Asia’s first sustainability linked club loan (in which fifteen banks jointly extended funds to the company).

Most recently, in July this year, Cofco International, the trading division of China’s biggest food company, has agreed a US$2.1 billion facility, which is the first sustainability loan in China and the largest to a commodity trader.  Interest rates will be linked to targets which include transparency in the supply chain to ensure that it is not contributing to deforestation.

Speaking about impact of the loan on the company’s business, Jing Wu, chief financial officer at Cofco International, argued that “future demand of agri commodities can only be met by sustainable sourcing”.  Green finance, coupled with clear performance on sustainability, will help to transform the agricultural sector and ensure it plays its part in our long term future.

為甚麼自然資源成本那麼重要? / Why does Natural Capital Cost matter?

Michele Leung, 香港地球之友綠色金融顧問 / Green Finance Advisor of Friends of the Earth (HK)

自然資源為地球上有限的實物和生物資源,包括水、土地、空氣及棲息地,而自然資源成本一詞則用於描述企業所能依賴的環境資源的未定價或非市場價值。通過進行環境輸入量的經濟評估,自然資源估值能有效補充ESG分析報告內容。

2013年,聯合國曾斥資開展一項具有標誌性意義的研究,名為「自然資源的危機:100個商業外部成本」的分析,並作為推動「生態系統及生物多樣性經濟學」的廣泛措施之一。 分析估計世界初級產業的土地使用、水用量、溫室氣體排放、空氣污染、土地和水污染、以及廢物的處理成本高達近7.3萬億美元。

2019年5月,生物多樣性和生態系統服務政府間科學 ― 政策平台(IPBES)發表了一份新報告,報告中發布的一些普遍統計數據和事實描述了令人擔憂的趨勢:

  • 75%:人類活動迄今為止「嚴重改變」了陸地環境的比率(海洋環境佔66%)
  • 47%:全球生態系統的規模和狀態指標比估計的自然標準減少了的比率(當中不少指標以每十年至少4%的幅度下降)

「2020年愛知目標」是各國政府於2010年簽訂的一系列全球生物多樣性承諾,旨在減慢生物多樣性的流失速度及為可持續發展經濟提供基礎,但是IPBES報告已經暗示這些目標將不會達到。以上事實表明,大自然的貢獻對我們和下一代至關重要,社會應更廣泛及深入地了解生物多樣性的減少所引起的風險。

惟有透過企業以至金融投資者的共同努力,大自然才可以被保護、回復生氣及可持續地發展。方法之一,就是將自然資源成本納入估值。一間公司採用的資源貨幣量化和其創造的環境外部成本,能促使環境風險整合到估值和定價機制中。此舉令環境外部成本成為進行公司財務分析時的考慮因素之一,並因此而有效地評估財務和信用風險的潛在影響,最後便能整合至投資層面。企業可利用自然資源估值,更了解公司因環境和社會影響將面臨的風險,而金融機構也會對特定環境風險投資進行壓力測試,並根據這些風險調整資產配置策略。

Natural capital is defined as the limited stocks of physical and biological resources found on earth including water, land, air and habitats while the term natural capital cost is used to describe the unpriced or non-market value of the environmental resources that businesses depend on. Natural capital valuation would supplement the ESG analysis with economic valuation of environmental inputs.

In 2013, a landmark study commissioned by UN, Natural Capital at Risk: The Top 100 Externalities of Business[1] analysis was launched and also as part of a wider initiative on The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity. The estimated cost of land use, water consumption, GHG emissions, air pollution, land and water pollution and waste for the world’s primary sectors amounts to almost US$7.3 trillion.

In May 2019, the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) issued a new report[2], some of the general statistics and facts published in the report describe alarming trends:

  • 75%: terrestrial environment “severely altered” to date by human actions (marine environments 66%)
  • 47%: reduction in global indicators of ecosystem extent and condition against their estimated natural baselines, with many continuing to decline by at least 4% per decade

The 2020 Aichi Targets – a set of global biodiversity commitments agreed by governments in 2010 – were designed to slow the rate of loss of biodiversity and provide foundations for a more sustainable economy, yet IPBES report implied these targets will be missed. All these pointed that natural’s contribution is very vital to us and our future generations. The implications of risk arising from biodiversity loss should be more widely and deeply understood.

The nature can be conserved, restored and used sustainably through collaborative efforts from business to financial investors. One approach would be to start integrating natural capital cost into valuation. The monetary quantification of resources used by a company and environmental externalities created enables the system integration of environmental risks into valuation and pricing mechanisms. It allows for consideration of environmental externalities in financial analysis of companies, and the potential impact on financials and credit risk, which would then be aggregated at portfolio level. Companies can use natural capital valuation to better understand the risks they face as a result of environmental and social impact costs, while financial institutions would also stress test its portfolio for specific environmental risks and adjust its asset allocation strategy according to environmental risk.

[1] https://www.trucost.com/publication/natural-capital-risk-top-100-externalities-business/
[2] Summary for policymakers of the global assessment report on biodiversity and ecosystem services of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services


地球著火了 / The Earth is on Fire

【意見交流園地】Karen Ho / 【Idea Exchange】Karen Ho

發生甚麼事?

巴西亞馬遜地區引發的火災在本周已引起全球關注,更被法國總統馬克龍稱為「國際危機」。亞馬遜被稱為「地球之肺」,因為它的樹木吸收二氧化碳並釋放氧氣,地球上每個人都受惠於一個擁有健康的亞馬遜。它也是地球上最大、最多樣化的熱帶雨林,更是世界上一半以上植物和動物的家園。

什麼是潛在的根本原因?

氣候變化(造成的乾燥天氣、風災和熱浪)、加速地砍伐樹木、棕櫚油、牛肉、大豆和木材都是已知的火災產生最大因素。同時,7月分森林砍伐率已達到了驚人的高位。人們砍伐了一片片的森林,令該地區變得乾旱,再燒掉了樹木殘骸,也可能有人放火以嘗試補充土壤,解釋了火勢蔓延的原因。

它與可持續金融有什麼關係?

挪威最大的投資者、管理著1,700億美元的綜合資產的Storebrand ASA以及KLP養老基金,正在研究哪些公司可能需要對火災造成的任何潛在損害負上責任。他們正在與不同企業商討,並加強研究,以確定誰應對任何潛在損害負責。瑞典政府也正在接觸其養老基金,以確保他們的投資不會引起對亞馬遜地區的環境破壞。

它與我有什麼關係?

如果你是可能直接或間接導致森林火災公司的投資者,你應該意識到你的投資可能存在風險,因為最大的投資者將有意撤資,這將影響他們的融資成本和股價。

全球客戶、銀行和投資者也對可能無法可持續採購的公司施加壓力。看看這份互動報告,了解誰在尋找可持續棕櫚油,這有助你在購買任何產品時作出明智的決定:

https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/ng-interactive/2014/nov/10/palm-oil-rainforest-cupboard-interactive

亞馬遜正在求救!請捐助Earth Alliance – Amazon Fund 以及 Rainforest Alliance 等慈善機構伸出援手!

香港地球之友一向關注氣候變化以及亞馬遜,以下為本會相關的建議及工作,期望得到你的支持和參與。

  1. 促請巴西政府必須積極尋求方法處理災情,世界各國長遠亦應改用可持續發展模式,停止開墾亞馬遜雨林。
  2. 促請政府增加本港的綠化比率,營造一個香港人的「碳匯」。
  3. 2005年開始本會舉辦《酷森林》,超過9,300名參加者成功登山植樹,在各大郊野公園共種植了83,000棵本地品種小樹苗。《酷森林2020》將於明年春季假大欖郊野公園舉行,本會已為此展開了籌備工作。
  4. 本會為「賽馬會智慧城市樹木管理計劃」提供樹木培訓。在來年,我們會安排更多中學講座和社區研討會,以加強市民對樹木的認識。

詳情請瀏覽本會新聞稿連結:
http://bit.ly/2lUoQ93

What is happening?

The fire raging across Brazil’s Amazon has become a global concern this week, it was being called as an “international crisis” by French President Emmanuel Macron. The Amazon is known as the “Lungs of the planet”, and everyone on the planet benefits from the health of the Amazon as its trees take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. It is also the largest, most diverse tropical rainforest on mother Earth and is home to more than half the world’s species of plants and animals.

What would be potential root cause?

Climate change (dry weather, wind and heat), accelerating deforestation, palm oil, cattle, soy and timber are known to be the greatest drivers. Deforestation rates reached startling highs in July. People cut down patches of forest, allow the area to dry out, then burn the remains and might also set fires to replenish the soil.

How is it related to Sustainable Finance?

Norway’s biggest investors, with combined assets under management of USD 170 Billion, Storebrand ASA and pension fund KLP are mapping out which companies may be responsible for any potential damage for the fire. They are talking to companies and intensifying their research to map out who’s responsible for any potential damage. The Swedish government is also reaching out to its pension funds to ensure their investments aren’t contributing to environmental damage in the Amazon.

How is it related to me?

If you are the investors of companies which could directly or indirectly contributing to the forest fire, you should be aware of potential risk of your investment as the biggest investors are going to exit their positions on those companies and it would affect their cost of finance and share price.

Global customers, banks and investors are also giving pressures to companies which might not be sourcing sustainably. Take a look at this interactive report to understand who are sourcing sustainable palm oil so you can make a wise decision when you buy any of your products from them:

https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/ng-interactive/2014/nov/10/palm-oil-rainforest-cupboard-interactive

Amazon S.O.S. Please help by donating to charities like Earth Alliance – Amazon Fund and  Rainforest Alliance !  

Climate change is FoE’s major advocacy and we really care about Amazon! We have the following four climate related recommendations and works to combat climate change. We look forward to your continued support and participation.

  1. We urge the Brazilian Government to actively tackle the disaster. Countries around the world should adopt a sustainable development model to stop deforestation in the Amazon rainforest.
  2. We urge the Hong Kong Government to increase the green ratio in Hong Kong and create a local “carbon sink”.
  3. We have organised Tree Planting Challenge since 2005. More than 9,300 participants have successfully climbed and planted 83,000 native saplings in various country parks. We are now preparing for “Tree Planting Challenge 2020”, which will be held in Tai Lam Country Park next spring.
  4. We have been delivering professional training to the local stakeholders under the “Jockey Club Smart City Tree Management Project”. In the coming year, we will be arranging more secondary school talks as well as community seminars to enhance their knowledge in trees.

Please refer to the link below to view our press release.
http://bit.ly/2lXwQWV

Green Finance Connect Series 4: Briefing Session for Public Engagement on Long-term Decarbonisation Strategy for Financial Practitioners – Sep 6, 2019

Hong Kong needs to draw up its long-term decarbonisation strategy up to 2050 by next year 2020.

In this regard, the Council for Sustainable Development (SDC) has accepted the Government’s invitation to roll out a territory-wide public engagement exercise to gauge the views of the public and stakeholders in formulating a long-term decarbonisation strategy for Hong Kong, and to mobilise stronger climate actions across different sectors of the society. The public engagement aims to arouse public awareness on the impact of carbon emissions, and to obtain the views of the community in developing feasible strategies for carbon reduction, with a view to making recommendations to the Government by the end of this year.

In view of this, Friends of the Earth (HK) is co-organizing a briefing session with Asia Investor Group on Climate Change (AIGCC) with the aim to engage the practitioners and stakeholders from the financial industry to leverage their expertise and ideas on possible actions related to reducing carbon emissions that suit the development progress of Hong Kong. This session will be facilitated by the public engagement team from the Policy for Sustainability Lab, Centre for Civil Society and Governance, The University of Hong Kong. As the co-organiser, we are extending invitations for the workshop.

You are cordially invited to participate in this workshop:

Address:        Function Room AC1, 

                      4/F., Administration Building, 

                      Hong Kong Cultural Centre, 

                      10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon 

Date:              6 September 2019(Friday) 

Time:             10:00am – 11:30am

Please click here for the registration to the briefing session.

For those who are unable to participate in person, you are also welcome to submit your views directly via the Views Collection Form.

Representatives from the Public Engagement Team

Ms Joyce CHOW – Senior Project Manager, Policy for Sustainability Lab, Centre for Civil Society and Governance, The University of Hong Kong

Ms Chow has been involved in various sustainability-related research and planning consultancy works with solid experiences in organising community participatory activities, conducting workshops and charettes and providing training for NGOs, private sector and government departments. Her major interest fields include environmental management, urban planning, sustainable development and transport planning. She has been a Chartered Town Planner of the Royal Town Planning Institute, the United Kingdom since 2008.

Mr Darwin LEUNG – Assistant Project Manager, Policy for Sustainability Lab, Centre for Civil Society and Governance, The University of Hong Kong

Mr. Leung was trained as an urban planner and he has engaged in various research on urban renewal, sustainability reporting and resource efficient cities. He has also participated in a number of consultancy projects for international organisations, such as the UNEP and the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development (CCICED); several work departments of the HKSAR Government such as Highways Department and Civil Engineering and Development Department. These projects have spanned across a wide range of topics, including climate change and building energy efficiency, harbour reclamation and waterfront planning, regional transportation planning, and green economy policies, practices and initiatives.

Green Finance Connect Series 3: ESG Standards and Its Implementation – An Analysis on HKEX Guideline from Investor’s Lens, 30 Aug (Mostafa Monira Firdouse)

Hope you had a good summer break and we are happy to share with you our 3rd Event of FoE (HK) Green Finance Connect Series after our Green Finance Launch and Sustainable Finance Lecture in July.

Through the Green Finance Connect Series, senior executives or professionals from financial industry come to FoE (HK) to share their insights and have in-depth dialogues on green finance.

Ms Mostafa Monira Firdouse holds a Master degree in Energy and Environmental Sustainability from The Open University of Hong Kong. She is a Senior Consultant of IFC – International Finance Corporation. She has led over 30 regional projects on Energy and Resource Efficiency, Green Building, Water, Agribusiness, etc.

Monira will share with FoE (HK) the ESG standards and its implementation in Hong Kong. How much has HKEX guideline is aligned with IFC’s Environmental and Social Management System (ESMS) performance standard? Are all 11 aspects in HKEX relevant for ESG performance measurement? What kind of social information are available for investors to make long term commitments? What are the areas that HKEX should consider to update, or be more be specific in existing guideline? The sharing session will be aiming to provide the answers to many of the questions faced by investors and public.

For registration and enquiries, please contact Ms Joyce Kiang at joycekiang@foe.org.hk .

Event details
Date: 30 August 2019, Friday
Time: 4:30 – 6:00 pm
Venue: FoE office (1301-1302, 13/F, Block A, Sea View Estate, 2 Watson Road, Hong Kong

不要忘記綠色金融的主要目的── 環境 / Let’s Not Forget about the Main Goal of Green Finance – it’s about the Environment

香港地球之友董事麥礎允 / Serena Mak, Board Member of Friends of the Earth (HK)

很多金融從業員一直討論,企業要達到可持續金融發展,有需要進行更理想、更高透明度的報告及披露。為達成此目標,訂立一個標準設定是十分重要的一環,當然,不同持分者對這些標準有不同的側重也不足為奇。甚至從更基本出發,各國看綠色金融的組成也有所不同。

其中一個例子為煤炭項目融資。一些機構強調煤炭不是可持續發展的資源,例如世界銀行在2013年發表了一份能源工業發展方向文件,以解決化石燃料的使用問題。但與此同時,在一些國家投資「潔淨煤炭技術」,可符合當地發行綠色債券的標準。

這究竟是好是壞?我認為,在金融業和政府正完善綠色金融生態系統的同時,公眾意識正在增強已經值得鼓舞。雖然爭論時有發生,但我們應該明白一個行業的發展必會經歷「出牙期」階段,最重要是不能忘記我們有共同的目標──為了自己及下一代,為我們可持續發展的環境作出貢獻。

Many financial practitioners have discussed the need for better, more transparent reporting and disclosure for corporates on sustainable finance. To achieve this goal, standard setting is an important component, and it is not surprising that different stakeholders will have different preferences on such standards. Even more fundamentally, what constitutes ‘green finance’ can also be different amongst countries.

One such example is financing in coal projects. Some organizations have taken views that coal is not sustainable – e.g. the World Bank has published an Energy Sector Directions Paper back in 2013 to address the use of fossil fuels. At the same time, investing in ‘cleaner coal technologies’ in some countries would meet the criteria of a green bond issuance in these locations.

Is this essentially good or bad? I think whilst the finance industry and governments shape up the ecosystem of Green Finance, it is encouraging to see that the awareness is increasing. Whilst there will be debates or even arguments, let’s understand that evolution of an industry will naturally go through ‘teething periods’, and let’s also not forget that we all have same goal – to contribute to environmental sustainability, for ourselves, and also for our next generations.

ESG評審 = Beauty Campaign?

香港地球之友綠色金融顧問 Si-Ling Wong

早前香港樂施會發表了針對50間恒生指數成份股公司所做的「企業社會責任透明度調查報告」,調查了這些藍籌股公司在CSR方面的披露水平。除了樂施會,不少機構團體都有發佈以CSR、ESG為主題的指數或評審,比如香港中文大學商學院商業可持續發展中心的「香港企業可持續發展指數」、香港品質保證局(HKQAA)與恒生指數公司合作的「可持續發展指數系列」等等。海外較著名的有FTSE4Good、Dow Jones RobecoSAM及最近因A股入摩而為人認識的MSCI。

各家都有自己的評分準則,筆者近日跟這方面的專家聊天時,對方亦表示此類評級比較主觀,始終人人心裏對是非黑白、正義都有不同的量度,每個行業、社會又有其獨特性,一個統一而又為大眾廣納的評審系統著實不易。有人能一統天下固然理想,但若有一個能被本土社區認可的基準實在已經不錯。

觀乎現今市場普遍的ESG評審標準,為保持客觀性,大都以審視公司的年報及CSR報告為基礎,再邀請公司填寫問卷,遞交附加資料,以評核其表現。筆者能明白這methodology透明度高且結果的可辯性低,但會做報告的公司是否就真實代表該公司在ESG做很多、做很好?我不肯定……

如果有機構能擬訂出一套方法來挑出大家都喜歡、同意的好公司便厲害。有點像選美,不是每屆戴上后冠的香港小姐都有絕對觀眾緣,能選到朱玲玲、李嘉欣、麥明詩、馮盈盈這麼受歡迎的Miss Hong Kong也不容易呵!期待這個標準的誕生呢~

在港推行ESG有何難處?

香港地球之友綠色金融顧問

香港的ESG發展起步較慢並非新鮮事,過往有研究發現香港只佔全球ESG投資份額0.06%,反映投資者作出這方面的投資決定時遇到障礙。過往本網誌專欄曾經批評有上市公司在ESG披露上做得不足,未能遵照港交所的要求。而縱觀整個股票市場,儘管港交所已經要求企業提交ESG的關鍵指標,但根據安永去年的研究,有多達六成的公司仍然當ESG披露為「例行公事」。

香港作為國際金融中心,雖然政府及上市機構近年正在加快支持綠色金融,但現今對推動ESG進展仍處於起步的階段。今年金管局宣布開始將ESG納入外匯基金的投資分析的一環,證監會去年制訂監管框架以加強上市公司的環境資訊披露,而聯交所亦剛完成針對上市規則中環境、社會及管治方面的檢討諮詢。雖然制度上香港仍是在布局階段,但相信綠色金融未來也會在香港成為大趨勢。

筆者認為ESG仍未受投資者重視的原因在於ESG數據的質素,上市及監管機構需要繼續加強力度去改善ESG滙報機制。專欄以往批評的上市公司只是冰山一角,很多公司都需要作出改善。因為業務不同,個別行業應有特定的要求準則,方能令公司有效交代重要的ESG風險。縱觀而言,許多綜合企業涉獵範疇廣泛,變相未能深入披露公司情況,而且現時許多公司未必有完善的ESG數據管理系統,或是沒有相關資源進行全面的分析,導致投資者對資料沒有信心。歸根究底,社會需要把ESG融入企業思維,才是治本方法。


湯臣一品

香港地球之友綠色金融顧問

上回筆者談過有關大快活的ESG 如何粗疏,遠遠未符港交所上市附例的最基本要求,但和今天筆者要談的湯臣集團 (258),相信大快活也要甘拜下風。

筆者執筆時,湯臣集團的2018年ESG 報告仍未上載,所以只能參考其2017年的報告。湯臣集團的業務,包括物業開發及管理、高爾夫球場、酒店以及娛樂事業。說到環境影響,最大的肯定是酒店業,其餘的業務也不能輕視。但見湯臣集團的報告,範圍定義竟然不包括酒店業及娛樂事業,明顯有意避開最重要的酒店業環境及社會責任影響。

看其報告內容,基本上沒有任何一個數字可用合理來形容,直接氣體排放Nitrogen oxides 的排放量是15,736,216 kg,距離合理數字千倍以上。他們定的報告範圍只包括物業管理及高爾夫球場,卻神秘地有798 kg 的 Methane 排放而沒有任何解釋,而他們用水量,更是天荒夜談,有351,329,597立方米,又是距離合理數字千倍以上。

如果說大快活的數字是隱惡揚善,湯臣集團的數字只能形容為徹底垃圾。這集團到現在仍是全國最奢侈住宅湯臣一品的開發商,偌大集團視港交所法律要求如無物,怎能不用為富不仁四字來形容?走筆到此,筆者真懷疑港交所內部的專業水平,為何容許如此荒謬的數據出現而沒有行動?

TCFD是什麼? / What is TCFD?

【意見交流園地】Karen Ho /【Idea Exchange】Karen Ho

TCFD,意即氣候相關財務披露工作小組,為企業提供框架,方便公司向投資者、貸款人、保險公司和其他持份者提供相關信息。

截至2019年6月,支持TCFD的團體已上升至792個。最近數月,一些本地機構陸續表態支持TCFD,例如香港金融管理局 (5月)、香港交易及結算所有限公司(6月)及證券及期貨事務監察委員會(7月)。

為什麼社會近月對此領域的興趣激增?

答案很簡單 — 氣候變化是迫切的事實(請瀏覽https://climate.nasa.gov/),我們需要為氣候危機做好準備,並積極留意周遭的機遇!

可是,作為個人、企業、投資者或貸款人,我們又應如何識別氣候變化對自身的影響?

關鍵是數據披露,沒有數據,我們便無法作出合理的決定來識別我們面對的潛在威脅,亦不能開始嘗試緩減和管理風險;同樣地,我們也無法得知能幫助建立業務彈性或保護個人投資項目的其他機會。請瀏覽https://www.tcfdhub.org/,以索取能幫助你進行TCFD披露的資源。

一切從建立意識和作出承諾開始,請繼續關注我們的綠色金融網誌,讓我們共同踏上可持續發展的未來!

TCFD means Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures which provides a framework for companies to provide information to investors, lenders, insurers, and other stakeholders.

Support for the TCFD has grown to 792 organizations as of June 2019. In Hong Kong, some noticeable additions of TCFD supporters are: Hong Kong Monetary Authority in May, Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited in June, followed by Securities and Futures Commission in July.

What could be the reasons of a sudden surge of interest in this area?

The answer is simple – Climate change is real (See https://climate.nasa.gov/), and we all need to be prepared for the risk, and look out for opportunities!

But how can we identify the climate change risk impacting us – as an individual, or corporate, or investor, or lender?

The key is data disclosure! Without data, we cannot make sound decision to identify potential threats to us, and start to mitigate and manage the risk; nor can we identify other opportunities which could help us to build business resilience or protect our investments. There are plenty of resources to help you with TCFD Disclosure (https://www.tcfdhub.org/).

It also starts with your awareness and commitment, stay tuned with our Green Finance Blog and let’s walk this journey together for a more sustainable future!