Climate Justice and Social Inequality: An Intersectional Issue
Updated: Nov 15, 2021
Investing in environmentally and socially impactful opportunities for greater success.
At a glance, climate change and social inequality seem distant. But when climate crises are left unmanaged it exacerbates the gap between the advantaged and the disadvantaged, leaving the latter to suffer disproportionately. With greater exposure and susceptibility to climate hazards, the disadvantaged groups suffer from a greater loss of assets and incomes.
Perhaps the most necessary element which distinguishes a true impactful investor from a mere financially strong investor is their ability to understand this intersectionality of climate change and social inequality. Investorstoday know that climate change and social inequality are important considerations to investment portfolios for long-term, lower-risk investments. However, many neglect to seek investment opportunities that merge the two ideas together, despite the greater benefits of doing so. Climate change is also a social justice issue, and with this understanding, investors have the power to play a critical role in ensuring our transition to a low-carbon economy while encouraging diversity and inclusion.
Whether it’s renewable energy usage, water pollution, hazardous waste disposal, or GHG emission, there are many overlapping criterias in social justice and climate that an investor can take into consideration. Taking this intersectional approach would not only offer green investment options, but also the opportunity to prioritize the needs of vulnerable communities.
Written by Brigitte Lee
S.Nazrul Islam and John Winkel, “Climate Change and Social Inequality,” United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, 17 October, 2017, https://www.un.org/esa/desa/papers/2017/wp152_2017.pdf
“Pursuing Climate Justice within Environmental, Social, and Governance Investment Frameworks,” Mary Robinson Climate Justice, January, 2017, https://media.business-humanrights.org/media/documents/files/documents/Pursuing_Climate_Justice_within_ESG_Investment_Frameworks_FINAL.pdf
Vladimir Demine, “The ESG Advantage in Long-Term Investing,” Morgan Stanley, 16 December, 2019, https://www.morganstanley.com/ideas/the-esg-advantage-in-long-term-investing