Superannuation body slams Trump on climate

The organisation representing some of Australia’s biggest superannuation funds has slammed US president Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord.

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The Australian Council of Superannuation Investors, which counts Australian Super among its 31 member funds, was one of the nearly 300 global investors who in May wrote to governments, including the US, urging them to stand by the Paris agreement to limit global warming.

President Trump said the world’s largest economy was quitting the agreement because it cost money and jobs, but the ACSI – whose members manage more than $450 billion in assets for more than eight million Australians – echoed global political and business leaders in condemning the move.

“It is disheartening to see a decision like this, by a wealthy industrialised nation, which flies in the face of scientific knowledge and investor concerns,” ACSI chief executive Louise Davidson said.

“The decision by the Trump administration to withdraw from the Paris Agreement is out of step with community expectations that governments will act in the face of these very real dangers.”

Ms Davidson welcomed the Australian government’s adherence to the Paris agreement and said it remained key to reducing investment risk due to climate change.

“We will continue to work with governments, companies and regulators to manage the risks of climate change for the benefit of our members and investors globally,” she said

“In spite of the disappointing news from the US, we are confident that the high level of global support for action to address climate change means that efforts to manage these risks will continue.”