Including Sustainability in Palm Oil Financial Rating

With its partners Climate Advisers and Profundo, Aidenvironment Asia has been awarded a grant from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation to promote the use of accurate sustainability assessments of palm oil companies by major financial institutions.

Over the past decade, the finance industry has become more sensitive to sustainability risk, not least owing to wide-ranging efforts by NGOs. However, recent assessments by Climate Advisers and Profundo show that most decision-makers in the finance industry still continue to view land bank expansion as the primary indicator of success for plantation companies. Sustainability risks associated with land bank expansion, including law violations, contributions to global climate change and biodiversity losses, and violation of indigenous peoples’ human rights, are not duly considered. A key reason for this is that decision makers in the finance industry have limited access to such information in a format they are familiar with.

Aidenvironment and its partners will investigate and rate six holding companies that own oil palm plantations and have entered or plan to float their shares on a stock exchange. Based on the research and ratings, reports will be published and communicated to raise awareness within the finance industry.

The long-term objective of this project is to make sustainability a standard criterion in mainstream investment and lending decision-making in the finance industry.

Aidenvironment is the lead partner in this interesting international collaborative project. We have considerable experience with managing complex international project partnerships and with upscaling very local knowledge to internationally relevant policy contexts.

For more information contact:

Asia: Eric Wakker, Aidenvironment Asia
Netherlands: Jan Willem van Gelder, Profundo
USA: Glenn Hurowitz, Climate Advisers