The Climate Change Institute is trialling a ‘business implementation methodology’ with three super funds with the aim to provide free licenses for major industry participants to cope with assessing their responses to global warming.

Research by the Institute, a not-for-profit organisation set up in 2005 to assist the response by businesses to climate change, shows the superannuation industry, including asset consultants, to be a mixed bag in looking at opportunities and threats in investment portfolios.

The results of a survey of asset consulting firms, published this month by the Institute and AIST, showed that 67 per cent of consultants did not offer any services to assess climate change risk exposure. Only 11 per cent offered to analyse the scope of one and two emissions of super funds’ investments, however, 78 per cent were planning to do so in the next 12 months.

Julian Poulter, the chief executive of the Institute, said that with the new business implementation methodology funds and consultants would not have any excuse to not have the capability to assess climate change risks.

He said the only effective way to hedge portfolios against climate change was to balance investments with new exposures to clean technologies.

The Institute will this week send out its second annual survey of super funds, with a letter of endorsement from Chris Bowen, the minister for financial services and superannuation.

The net has been widened this year, with funds with assets of more than $300 million being canvassed, against funds with more than $1 billion last year. This lifts the number of funds to be surveyed from 73 to 115.

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