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Sustainable corporate treasury management is vital, BUT don’t forget the cow

Trump could make it worse, but, as Bertrand Gacon writes in THE Asset he has actually increased the focus on environental change. However, “Even if we never consumed another unit of fossil-fuel based energy, we would still breach the emissions limits established in the Paris Agreement by 2030. And one of the worst offenders? The humble cow.”

Agriculture the new frontier

Gacon continues, “A 2009 report from World Watch estimated that when the life cycle and supply chain of livestock and its by-products are taken into account, they are responsible for 51% of annual worldwide Green House Gas emissions.” So it is not surprising that environmentalists are cutting down on how much meat they eat and are recommending others to do the same. Should corporate treasurers follow?

Something needs to be done, as deforestation is accelerating to make way for grazing land.  AND not only this, meat production uses other vital resources, e.g. the average person should drink around 2 litres of water a day, a burger is equivalent to 1500 days of drinking water.

Gacon concludes, “We clearly need to rethink our approach to food and agriculture as a global population.”

New investment opportunities

The World Economic Forum estimates that limiting the global temperature increase to 2 degree celsius will require up to US$700 billion of additional investment every year across the low-carbon economy. De-carbonizing the agribusiness will be a key part of that opportunity. Gacon pointed out that, although global green bonds issuance reached US$890 bn in 2016,  in-depth and experienced management in the market is required to be able to offer higher yields relative to their credit quality versus conventional investment grade bonds.

Unsustainability of exhibitions

As you go round the ACT Annual Conference in Manchester on 16-17 May or SAP User Group this week in Orlando remember that there is now an alternative to custom-built stands. Alan Jenkins, Managing Director of Quadrant2Design, explains, “The new solutions seek to combine the looks of a custom designed stand, with the benefits of a reusable modular system.” And, critically, the CO₂ impact is so much lower. Ask your bank or supplier, “Is your stand re-usable modular build?” If not, why not? 

CTMfile take: The whole corporate treasury business needs to play their part in halting climate change.

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