Smart Pension partners with Make My Money Matter to commit to Net Zero and take action against climate change

Prominent UK master trust, Smart Pension, today signs up to Make My Money Matter and pledges to develop its investment approach and commit to Net Zero emissions well ahead of the 2050 deadline outlined by other schemes.

Smart Pension partners with Make My Money Matter to commit to Net Zero and take action against climate change

  • Smart Pension joins other scheme giants in making a comprehensive commitment to Net Zero well ahead of 2050 – aiming to halve its emissions significantly earlier than the Paris Climate Agreement deadline of 2030.
  • In signing up to the Make My Money Matter campaign, Smart Pension is pledging to go faster and make changes well in advance of what’s being asked.  
  • Smart will make allocations to a new Social Impact Fund, investing in companies that are tackling climate change.
  • Smart Pension is developing technology to provide members with influence over ESG issues, including where and how their pension savings are invested.
  • Smart will work on a number of initiatives to strengthen its fund range to offer members more climate-friendly options that actually decarbonise the world economy.
  • Richard Curtis’ backed Make My Money Matter will work alongside Smart Pension on its transition as it asks all providers to align themselves with the Paris Climate Agreement.
  • Over 13 million UK pensions are now committed to Net Zero following the launch of Make My Money Matter last year.

1 February 2021, London – Prominent UK master trust, Smart Pension, today signs up to Make My Money Matter and pledges to develop its investment approach and commit to Net Zero emissions well ahead of the 2050 deadline outlined by other schemes. Working alongside Richard Curtis’ backed Make My Money Matter, Smart Pension will take action now to make the required changes as it further pledges to halve its scheme emissions significantly earlier than the 2030 deadline to align with the Paris Climate Agreement.

The workplace pension provider sets a comprehensive industry example ahead of a Glaswegian COP26 later this year and, as part of this, will continue to develop its proposition to invest in products that tackle the climate crisis where it is in members’ best interest. During Q1 2021, Smart Pension will also introduce an allocation to a new Social Impact Fund, which will capture investment opportunities that offer solutions to broader environmental and social challenges such as healthcare solutions for ageing populations, social housing, technologies to improve the use of water and gender equality in employment.

The wellbeing of members remains the driving factor behind Smart Pension’s transition to Net Zero. In tackling the negative impacts of climate change, Smart Pension will help to build a better world for its members as they retire. The transition is expected to have a material impact on the value of investments over each member’s pension lifespan – meaning that the pledge will bring both positive environmental and financial outcomes for Smart Pension’s members.  

The announcement aligns Smart with pension industry giants who have contributed to the now over 13 million UK Net Zero pensions since Make My Money Matter’s campaign launched last year.

Paul Bucksey, Managing Director of the Smart Pension Master Trust commented:

“Climate change is one of the most important issues facing each and every one of us. But achieving great risk-adjusted returns for members while investing for long term environmental and societal benefits aren’t mutually exclusive objectives, and it is important that trustees and scheme sponsors grasp the opportunity that this offers."

“Having repositioned the Smart Pension default investment strategy to focus on companies with high Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) scores, and with an upcoming additional allocation to Social Impact, we’re delighted to further underline our commitment to sustainable investing by partnering with Make My Money Matter."

“We are really excited about the difference our scheme can make over the short and medium term, and are currently actively working with our partners to develop funds that actually decarbonise the economy rather than offsetting in other ways - which does not address the real problem. As you can expect with Smart Pension we are looking to bring real innovation in this space for the benefit of society and our members, and plan to make some further exciting announcements over the coming months.”

Commenting on the announcement, Richard Curtis, Co-Founder of Make My Money Matter said:

"Smart Pension’s announcement sets a glowing example for the pensions industry. In pledging to take action now and make these changes in advance of the deadlines, Smart aligns itself with the aims of the Paris Climate Agreement that seek to limit global warming to a maximum of 1.5 degrees Celsius and avoids paying corporate lip service."

“As one of the first master trusts in the UK to appoint a Head of Sustainable Investing, we applaud the further measures that Smart Pension will take – such as proactive impact investment into solutions that actively tackle climate change and social issues. This robust pledge shows that the pensions industry can harness its hidden superpowers to not only deliver health returns, but also a healthy planet to retire into."

"Smart Pension joins a growing list of organisations stepping up to ensure their pensions are fighting, not causing climate change, and we urge all schemes to follow suit ahead of the international climate change conference this November.”

Notes to Editors

Contact

For press enquiries please contact:

Holly McElhone – Press & Communications Manager

Make My Money Matter

Email: holly@makemymoneymatter.co.uk

Telephone: 07860754337

Candida Hilton – Head of PR & Media

Smart Pension

Email: candida.hilton@smartpension.co.uk

Telephone: 020 8016 2553

About Make My Money Matter

Make My Money Matter was founded by Richard Curtis, writer, director, UN SDG Advocate and Co-founder of Comic Relief; and Jo Corlett, former No. 10 and Department for International Development Special Adviser.

Make My Money Matter is led by CEO Tony Burdon, Former Deputy Director of the International Financial Institutions Department at the Department for International Development; and Campaign Director David Hayman.  

Make My Money Matter aims to achieve the following:

  • For consumers to call on pension funds to invest our money responsibly to drive a clean, green, sustainable recovery from Covid-19.
  • For employers to align their corporate pension with their values and demand that their pension fund leads on responsible and sustainable investment.
  • For pension funds to better engage their members, increase the positive impact of their investments and commit to achieving net zero emissions by 2050, with a halving by 2030.
  • For the UK Government to require all pension funds to align their portfolios to the Paris Agreement and net zero targets
  • For pension funds to become better stewards of their investments and integrate ESG across their portfolios.

Find out more at:

makemymoneymatter.co.uk/net-zero  

Twitter: @MMMoneyMatter

YouTube: Make My Money Matter

#PensionsWithIntention #NetZeroHero

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