Progress Report

Context

Key highlights

(As of December 31, 2020)

20%Reduction of carbon emissions vs benchmark
(33% target)
4.4%Of the MIP in Impact Investment (5% target).
Includes a commitment of US 25M in a Global Renewable Energy Fund
 
99%Managers that have adopted a ESG Policy or are signatories of the UNPRI
$9.2MInvestments in fossil-fuel-free funds (surpassing the initial $5M commitment)
 

Update on the implementation of the recommendations

1. Reduce the overall carbon emissions of the endowment portfolio

Status: On track 🟢

  • Reduction by 20% of carbon emissions vs benchmark as of December 31, 2020 (was at 9.0% in Sept. 2019).

2. Invest in low-carbon funds and funds that contribute to decarbonization

Status: On track 🟢

  • Impact Investments, including commitments, represent 4.4% of the MIP
    • Additional investment of up to US$25M in a Global Renewable Energy Fund approved in Sept 2020.

3. Increase the amounts invested in the fossil-fuel-free fund

Status: On track 🟢

  • Represents $9.2M as of December 31, 2020.
  • University Advancement launched a branding effort at the end of October 2020 to promote the new Green Century Fund.

4. Exercise active stewardship through investor engagement opportunities with investment managers

Status: On track 🟢

  • Increased managers that have adopted a ESG (Environmental, Social, Corporate Governance) Policy or are signatories of the UNPRI (United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment) from 70% in 2016 to 99% as of December 31, 2020.
  • McGill has committed to a new university-led initiative for shareholder engagement (referred to as the University Network for Investor Engagement – UNIE). This collaborative effort will leverage McGill’s power as an institutional investor to meaningfully address the drivers of climate change in companies in which MIP invests.

5. Review the Statement of Investment Policy of the MIP to reflect Environmental, Social and Governance goals and objectives

Status: Completed 🏁

  • The Statement of Investment policy was amended in June 2020 to reflect ESG goals and objectives, including modifying the Investment Objective section to consider ESG commitments with the aim to implement the proposed CAMSR recommendations.

6. Present to the Board and publish, annually, a report on socially responsible investing

Status: On track 🟢

  • Beginning in spring 2021, the Investment Committee will present an annual Socially Responsible Investment report to the Board of Governors.

7. Review socially responsible investing practices on a five-year basis

Status: On track 🟢

  • A review of the current Socially Responsible Investment practices has been added to the Board’s calendar of business and is planned to take place in Spring 2025.

8. Take a leadership role to evaluate and promote socially responsible investing policies and best practices.

Status: On track 🟢

  • In June 2020, McGill University signed the Investing to Address Climate Change: A Charter for Canadian Universities.
  • In collaboration with peers at other U15 universities, the Office of Investments is evaluating and promoting policies and best practices in the area of Socially Responsible Investment.

Download the detailed progress report

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