Over the next few years, the Fonds de solidarité FTQ will be making an important transition toward more ecologically responsible choices. A few months ago, the Fonds announced the decision to shareholders, focusing on one fundamental aspect: respect for workers with regard to the creation and maintenance of jobs, as well as the performance of their savings for retirement.
In addition to withdrawing from one of the most polluting energy sectors, the Fonds has added ten coal companies to its list of excluded holdings. The David Suzuki Foundation and Greenpeace commended the announcement, which was also heartily applauded by shareholders.
Transitioning for the future
Why this shift? Mario Tremblay1 explains: “The Fonds de solidarité is a socially responsible investment fund with more than 645,000 shareholders – workers from across Québec – and an increasing number were demanding a transition plan for the future. We also want to do our part to help Québec and Canada reach the objectives set in the Paris climate agreement.”
He adds that the Fonds has joined the CDP (Carbon Disclosure Project), an independent non-profit organization, which acts as an intermediary between some 800 institutional investors and businesses worldwide. “These businesses are committed to itemizing and reducing their greenhouse gas emissions. They also disclose their levels of risk and their action plans,” he explains.
A broad vision
Furthermore, the Fonds has set up a committee that will focus on greenhouse gas reduction targets, as well as investment sectors to prioritize and sectors to drop from their portfolio during the next few years.
“These are in addition to other Fonds investments that support the energy transition, such as Enerkem – a producer of biofuel made from waste – and Lion electric school buses. A growing number of SMBs want to be accompanied in this shift, as the challenge is far greater for them,” he concludes.
1 Mario Tremblay is vice-president of corporate and public affairs at the Fonds de solidarité FTQ.