In the new world of alternative facts, US President Donald Trump has called climate change a hoax and has proposed significant cuts for the US Environmental Protection Agency, while considering withdrawing from the Paris Agreement, which 190 countries signed up to in order to cut global warming.
So Outsider wonders what Trump’s response would have been to a recent discussion held by BetaShares managing director, Alex Vynokur and chair of Asset Owners Disclosure Project, Dr John Hewson. They said investors were increasingly recognising that there was a financial risk involved in climate change. Furthermore, climate change was now the largest consideration for many investors and advisers.
Younger investors are particularly hopping on the sustainable investing bandwagon and they want to be able to relate to a cause when they invest.
To quote the very wise Sideshow Bob from The Simpsons, “treat kids like equals, they’re people too!”
Hewson, who was the federal leader of the Liberal Party and leader of the opposition from 1990 to 1994, said even the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) had changed its mind and said climate change could threaten the entire financial system, and acknowledged super fund trustees and directors had a personal fiduciary responsibility to manage those investments.
Now, Mr Trump considers himself an astute businessman. Outsider wonders whether his stance on climate change would alter given the financial implications and the fact that fiduciary responsibility rests with fund managers.
Somewhere across the Pacific Ocean, Outsider can hear a chorus of “fake news!”