Investing in Solutions to Climate Change: Making Green by Being Green


Over at Two Steps Forward, Joel Makower has an excellent piece on the potential for forward-thinking investors (and the large corporations who are being invested in) to profit from changes in climate policy. According to a newly published report by Citigroup Investment Research, in partnership with the World Resources Institute's Capital Markets Research Team, "While there are companies that will suffer from climate policy changes, there are companies that will benefit as well. Someone must sell the products and services that will help companies meet, say, emissions targets should they become law...." GE's Ecomagination campaign is one such program that's highlighted; to be sure, it is one that is cashing in on the development and sale of new, green products and technologies (see this post for more details). The list is certainly not a "who's who in sustainable companies," concentrating instead on those who stand to profit from the transition to a more renewable, less oil-centric economy.For example, Monsanto makes the list for their development of technology to increase the corn yield per acre, a boon to ethanol production (their use of genetically-modified seeds notwithstanding). GE, as mentioned before, has had to stand up to accusations of greenwashing, though their ability to make large sums of money from their new green technology cannot be denied (see the article for a more complete list).

Though Makower makes some good points about the shortcomings of the report (which we will not deny), we think it could be a very effective way to engage the public at large in sustainability and green technology. Admittedly, not everyone "gets" sustainability, but just about everyone "gets" profitability, saving money and getting more by doing less (anyone looking for confirmation should look no further than the recent spike in gas prices). The report then affords a thumbnail view into a more sustainable economy, which can help everyone from board room executives to potential job seekers see who is best prepared to thrive in a climate-changing world. ::Investing in Solutions to Climate Change via ::Two Steps Forward