Germany’s largest public pension provider joins net zero asset owner alliance
The Bayerische Versogungskammer (BVK), which manages €97.2bn assets for twelve liberal professions´ and communal pension schemes in Germany’s federal state Bavaria, has joined the Net Zero Asset Owner Alliance on Thursday.
The network brings together the world’s largest asset owners that aim to reduce the CO2 emissions of their investment portfolios to net zero by 2050. Some 40+ institutional investors, with combined assets under management of nearly $7trn, are part of the alliance.
“Given the urgency with which climate change is to be tackled, asset owners such as ourselves want to use their investment strategies on a worldwide scale to help limit global warming to a maximum of 1.5 °C in accordance with the Paris Climate Agreement. For us, sustainability has long been a key focus, and we will render our contribution to achieving a climate-neutral economy,” said André Heimrich, Chief Investment Officer at BVK.
A signatory of the United-Nations supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), BVK had joined the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark in March 2020 in order to improve the carbon footprint and measure ESG performance of its real estate portfolio.
Said Nicole Becker, BVK’s head of board affairs and sustainability in the investments division, the German group joining the alliance “represents an important step for BVK in the continued development of its sustainability strategy in capital investment.” She added “this clear positioning helps us to sharpen and implement our goals in the asset classes with the utmost stringency. Essential structures for achieving the goals of the Net Zero Asset Owner Alliance have already been established via our engagement approach with the exercising of voting rights, as well as our internal and external sustainability analyses. And we will now expand these structures further."
Germany´s largest pension group under public law BVK covers about 2.4 million insured persons in total, with contributions of €5.2bn and about €3.8bn pension payments annually.