Our environmental, social and governance (ESG) approach
Our approach to sustainable investing is guided by our legal duty to members, our core investment beliefs, and our Sustainable Investment Policy.
We use the following as part of our approach to sustainable investment:
- ESG integration
- Stewardship (engagement and proxy voting)
- and, in limited cases, exclusions.
We believe integrating ESG factors into our investment processes is consistent with better investment outcomes.
Our Sustainable Investment Policy covers our over-arching principles.
How does that work?
We invest the majority of the Fund's portfolio through external investment managers. Therefore, ESG integration is predominantly executed through the selection, appointment, and monitoring of new and existing managers.
We undertake stewardship activities through engagement and proxy voting. The number of our holdings means we cannot engage all the companies in which we are invested. Where we do engage our investee companies, we use the following methods; directly, collaboratively, or through a service provider. Where possible, we will endeavour to vote at all company meetings on resolutions for which we are eligible to vote, with some exceptions, detailed in our Sustainable Investment Policy.
We apply screening (exclusions) in limited circumstances. There are, however, some occasions where it may be considered appropriate to exclude certain investments. Exclusions applied to the Australian and International shares asset classes across all Super Savings options are outlined in our Super Savings Investment Guide.
Our Sustainable Investment report offers more detail on our approach.
What are ESG factors?
Examples of ESG factors that we may consider as part of our investment process are:
|Climate change||Health and safety||Board independence|
|Biodiversity||Human rights and modern slavery||Board and company diversity|
|Waste and pollution||Labour standards||Shareholder rights|
|Energy efficiency||First Nations||Executive remuneration|
Our approach to climate change
Climate change represents one of the most significant challenges of our time, and as global investors we’re committed to doing our part towards investing in a low-carbon economy.
Our Sustainable Investment Policy outlines our approach to managing climate-related investment risks and opportunities in the investment portfolio. We have adopted a target of a net zero greenhouse gas emissions investment portfolio by 2050.1
Our Net Zero 2050 Roadmap
We recognise the importance of enhancing our disclosures for our members and other stakeholders. Our Net Zero 2050 Roadmap outlines our current plan to transition towards a net-zero greenhouse gas emissions investment portfolio by 20501 and accelerate actions towards our target. It establishes the guiding principles, our approach to setting interim targets and the 2-year action plan for our investment portfolio.
To demonstrate progress on our commitments, we will report on an annual basis in accordance with voluntary or mandatory requirements.
Choose an option that’s right for you
While we consider ESG factors across all our investment options, we offer the Socially Conscious Balanced option for members who want to invest their superannuation according to an extended set of ESG principles.
The Socially Conscious Balanced option is a responsible investment product certified since 2007 by the Responsible Investment Association Australasia (RIAA).
Frequently asked questions
What is sustainable investing?
Sustainable investing considers environmental, social and governance factors in the investment process. We see sustainable investing as a part of our legal duty to members, to better protect and manage investments for the long term.
Read more about our approach to sustainable investing in our Sustainable Investment Policy.
Does Australian Retirement Trust have an ESG member choice investment option?
Yes. Our Socially Conscious Balanced investment option is designed for members who want to accumulate wealth over the long term and who want to ensure their investments are made in line with an extended set of environmental, social and governance principles.
How do Australian Retirement Trust investments perform?
Our investment team’s expertise and experience help us deliver competitive investment returns over the long term. View our superannuation performance for the Australian Retirement Trust Super Savings account and compare our investment options.
1. Scope 3 category 15 (investments) emissions. PCAF (2022). The Global GHG Accounting and Reporting Standard Part A: Financed Emissions. Second Edition.