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Material Matters: The Role of ESG Materiality in Sustainable Investment Strategies

In this article we define ESG materiality and highlight what investors need to know when considering the materiality of ESG issues in their investment portfolios.

Child Labor in Cocoa Supply Chains | Morningstar Sustainalytics

Child Labor in Cocoa Supply Chains: Unveiling the Layers of Human Rights Challenges

Child labor remains a persistent issue in the cocoa supply chain. So can major food brands do to stop it? Discover the steps companies can take to address the issue and ways investors can engage with companies to mitigate it.

ESG in Conversation: The AI Revolution Comes to ESG

Learn how AI technology is being leveraged in the world of ESG research and analysis in our latest episode.

Gloved hand holding clump of oil sand

Lines in the Sand: How Canada’s Oil Sands Companies Can Pave Their Way to Net Zero

Post-COP 28 countries have agreed to an orderly transition away from fossil fuels. This article explores what that could look like for Canada’s oil and gas producers.

Aerial photo of clear cutting in Amazon rainforest

Constructing Zero Deforestation Portfolios to Combat Climate Change and Biodiversity Loss

The world’s forests are under threat, putting ecosystem services and global economic wealth in danger. But investors can help to fight deforestation. In this article, learn the reasons why investors should pursue zero deforestation portfolios.

Climate Change, Innovation, and Cybersecurity in the Defense Industry: New Opportunities for ESG Investors

While perhaps not a widely considered link between the defense industry and climate change, several Eurosatory conference sessions addressed how climate change can intensify security risks and threats.

human rights

Applying Business and Human Rights International Standards to Investor Due Diligence

Socially conscious ESG investors are interested in how to implement international business and human rights norms in their portfolios and understand the potential impacts of applying additional screening criteria within their strategy.

controversial weapons ESG

The Governance of Autonomous Weapons: What Investors Should Know

The ethical implications of lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS), often referred to by their dramatic moniker ‘killer robots’, have long been a topic of interest. Until recently, debates about LAWS were relegated as hypothetical, with the technology assumed to be under development and out of reach. Such assumptions may be due for reevaluation, and while a firm conclusion is yet to be drawn, it is worthwhile presenting them to the ESG investment community.

aviation in Ukraine ESG

ESG Implications of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine on the Aviation and Defense Sectors

The aviation industry is feeling the impact of rising fuel costs as an immediate repercussion of the conflict in Ukraine. In particular, the airline sector is still facing significant challenges in mounting a steady recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. On the other hand, the defense industry may be presented with opportunities in light of increased government spending in the aftermath of the invasion.

Rubles Russia ESG

Banks’ ESG Risks Related to the Russia-Ukraine Conflict on Investors’ Radars

Investor interest in the banking sector remains high as the impact of Russian sanctions unfolds. Based on Morningstar Sustainalytics’ research, total unmanaged risk has increased for both Russian and international banks with exposure to Russian clients. To what extent have sanctions affected banks’ total unmanaged risk?

grain processing plant in a field

ESG Impacts of the War in Ukraine: Global Food Supply

The invasion of Ukraine highlights the fragility of the global food system. The destruction caused by the war and subsequent trade restrictions on Russia, endangers a significant percentage of the global food supply coming from two of world’s leading agricultural commodity exporters, consequently prompting food prices to surpass the 30-year high.

Ukraine Oil and Gas

Russia, ESG Risks in Energy, and Corporate Citizenship

As the unprecedented situation in Ukraine continues to unfold, Russia’s energy industry has remained remarkably untouched by the waves of sanctions currently being deployed against the country, despite being arguably its most important sector. While the European Union and its allies have been cautious to avoid disrupting energy flows (unlike how sanctions are currently disrupting the flow of capital), international oil companies are responding to the crisis in their own capacity.

Key Themes Shaping Proxy Voting in 2022

Key Themes Shaping Proxy Voting in 2022

As the volume and breadth of ESG risk exposure continue to rise, the stage is set for another momentous proxy season. The trending topics of last year will continue to steer the agenda—with the prospect of even more substantial support from shareholders in 2022.

cocoa farming

The Sustainability Conundrum of Living Income in Agriculture

Living Income is a crucial consideration among leading companies across some sectors and their supplier companies throughout the agricultural and food supply chain. Companies that manage ESG risk in their supply chains, making targeted investments to improve their resilience, are better positioned to build investor confidence.

oil and gas ESG risk

The ESG Risks of National Oil Companies Taking Over Fossil Fuel Production from International Oil Majors

As growing pressure to cut GHG emissions is causing Western oil majors to sell their high-carbon assets, it is expected that National Oil Companies (NOCs) will pick up some of the production. For investors holding an interest in or considering investing in NOCs or sovereign debt, it is worth assessing how fossil fuel production shifts will impact their portfolio’s alignment with climate ambitions and ESG values.

human rights engagement

Human Rights Due Diligence – An Essential Step for Corporate Social Sustainability

Corporates seeking to be socially sustainable must be able to comply with existing and upcoming legislation, mitigate reputational risks, and meet the evolving expectations of their stakeholders.

European Court of Human Rights

Bringing Investors and Companies Together to Accelerate Human Rights Progress

Human rights issues have been rising on the responsible investment agenda in recent years. The COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement have provoked even more pointed discourse on the topic. The European Union’s current efforts to introduce rules to hold companies accountable for social and environmental risks in their supply chains further accelerate that ascent. This wave of legal requirements and normative expectations is impacting financial markets worldwide, with responsible business regulations already in place or quickly becoming valid.

Responsible Investing

Recent market trends put engagement and voting front and centre for responsible investors

From a market perspective, engagement and voting on governance issues have been used as levers for influence for a long time. On the other hand, environmental and social issues were historically addressed from a values-based perspective or primarily for fact-finding purposes. Today, many responsible investors leverage corporate dialogue as a tool to influence and drive meaningful change and impact

North American Material Risk Engagement Trends: ESG Reporting Frameworks, Emission Reduction Targets and Beyond

There are many factors that rating agencies consider within its overall assessment. For example, ESG rating companies tend to look for at least three years of ESG metrics to determine company trends and long-term ESG targets, goals, and strategies to manage and reduce ESG risks at least five years ahead. Read on to learn about how Sustainalytics' Material Risk Engagement program promotes and protects long-term value by engaging with high-risk companies on financially-material ESG issues. (A North American Snapshot)

climate litigation Netherlands

What Climate Litigation Means for the Oil & Gas Industry

As the global economy looks towards recovery after being impacted by the pandemic, the oil and gas industry faces a growing wave of shareholder activism and climate litigation due to a heightened focus on an accelerated transition as an indirect impact of the pandemic – painting an increasingly bleak picture for those within the industry.