Chief financial officers at companies including

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA,

Ford Motor Co.


Verizon Communications Inc.

are calling on other executives to make sure their businesses help fight poverty and climate change.

A group of CFOs on Monday published a framework to help guide companies’ decision-making in areas such as corporate finance and investing to support the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. These goals, adopted in 2015, include ending poverty by 2030, taking action against climate change and improving access to clean water.

The CFOs are urging other finance executives to allocate their companies’ resources to projects that support the development goals and expand their set of funding instruments to include green bonds and other sustainability-oriented tools, executives said.

“Because of the seats we sit in within our companies, us being seen as supporting it…makes people take a second look and say, ‘Hey, maybe there are things we can do,’” Verizon CFO Matthew Ellis said.

The telecommunications company last week issued a $1 billion green bond and said it would use the proceeds to support four of the U.N.’s 17 goals in areas such as clean energy and economic growth. Verizon plans to invest in solar and wind facilities to power its networks.

Investors increasingly take interest in environmental, social and governance issues. Funds that pursued sustainability targets in their investment strategy during the first half of 2020 attracted $20.9 billion in net new assets from investors. That is roughly on par with the whole of 2019 and about four times as much as in 2018, according to

Morningstar Inc.,

a ratings company. Morningstar analyzed 334 U.S. funds in its tally.

Fernando Tennenbaum, chief financial officer of AB InBev.


The headlines make the situation seem like a curiosity.

For investors, Wall Street analysts, and even some financial journalists, the reality of the damage to the economy, several weeks after the initial round of fiscal support expired, may indeed seem like a spectacle.

But it’s not that way for millions of Americans out of work or struggling to pay the rent or buy food in the wake of this year’s coronavirus pandemic.

It may not need saying that the longer the economy goes without another financial aid package, the worse the situation may become. But some analysts increasingly think it will also soon start to make an impact where it cannot be ignored: in the financial markets.

“Stimulus is the wrong word for this,” said David Rosenberg, a long-time strategist now running his own firm, Rosenberg Research. “This not classic Keynesian stimulus. It’s a lifeline to get us through. The stimulus has become what the Phase One Trade deal was last year.”

Week after week, roughly 800,000 Americans file for first-time jobless benefits, the springtime Congressional stimulus money has run out, and things are generally growing more dire for businesses and households, Rosenberg thinks. “If they don’t pass some sort of bill quickly, how many businesses will go under, how many missed payments will we see on rent, debt service, and utilities? The next few months are really critical. I’m quite amazed that there’s quibbling over a hundred billion dollars here and there with so much at stake.”

See: Yes, the U.S. economy really does need more fiscal stimulus – and the stock market knows it

It’s important to note that Rosenberg and other analysts do believe that some sort of stimulus package will be enacted eventually. And so does the stock market, which has been gravitating toward areas investors

The business district in Brussels, Belgium. 

Photographer: Jasper Juinen/Bloomberg

The European Union wants to at least double the pace of renovation of homes and offices over the coming decade in a bid to save more energy and meet stricter climate goals under a sweeping green overhaul.

The Renovation Wave strategy, to be unveiled by the European Commission on Wednesday, will outline steps needed to accelerate upgrades of more than 200 million existing buildings — including insulation and change of heating equipment — at a cost of nearly 300 billion euros ($355 billion) per year, according to draft EU documents seen by Bloomberg News.

Explore dynamic updates of the earth’s key data points

Buildings account for more than a third of EU greenhouse-gas emissions, and improving their energy efficiency is a prerequisite for Europe to meet its Green Deal goal of becoming the world’s first climate-neutral continent by the middle of this century. The EU regulatory arm in Brussels has a policy of not commenting on documents before they are made public.

“Building renovation represents an enormous opportunity not only for emissions reductions, but also economic growth and improved health and well-being,” said the Buildings Performance Institute Europe think-tank in Brussels.

The commission wants to increase the average rate of energy renovation to 2% per year by 2030 from the current 1%, according to the EU documents. That would mean upgrades of 35 million buildings over the next 10 years, a move that would not only benefit the environment but also create as many as 160,000 green jobs.

The initiative will be financed through the EU economic recovery program and various support instruments, including incentives for private investment. The commission wants to focus on cutting emissions from heating and cooling, tackling the most leaky buildings and

LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Spurring ambitious-enough action to stem climate change will require persuading most people that its impacts – from deadlier weather to surging migration – are a direct and imminent threat to themselves, according to a British defence official.

Global warming “is not inconvenient if you’re not affected by it at all”, said Richard Nugee, head of climate change and sustainability strategy at the Ministry of Defence, during an online event run by London-based think-tank Chatham House this week.

The lack of a sense of personal threat is one reason why “climate change always seems to be number two” on Britain’s list of public concerns, behind other shifting priorities like Brexit – Britain’s departure from Europe – and COVID-19, he said.

“The urgent always overtakes the important. And everything apart from climate change seems to be the urgent,” he added.

But with the window to cut climate-heating emissions and tame climate risks closing fast, more and more people are likely to be hit soon by anything from worsening floods and storms to economic losses, climate security experts warned.

A broad inability to grasp that threat – particularly in many so far less-affected richer nations that generate most of the emissions driving global warming – is a major barrier to climate action, they said.

“A lot of it is a failure of imagination, on one hand of how bad it is going to be – you can’t believe we’re actually ruining this planet – and a failure of imagination in creating new systems,” said Alexander Verbeek, founder of the Netherlands-based Institute for Planetary Security.


The coronavirus pandemic has given more people a sense of how quickly a personally painful crisis can emerge, said Mami Mizutori, the U.N. Secretary-General’s special representative for disaster risk reduction.

What COVID-19

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