AXA has outlined plans to commit €1.5bn to support sustainable forest management.
The group said it has pledged to fight against the deterioration of forest ecosystem as deforestation is the main cause of biodiversity loss and carbon emissions. Furthermore, deforestation represents a double loss for the climate because forests make are the greatest contributors to carbon capture.
Some €500m of the total €1.5bn has been earmarked for reforestation projects in emerging countries enabling a total of 25 megatons of CO2 to be captured each year.
The group currently has more than 60,000 hectares of forests in its portfolio, including those offered by AXA Investment Management, which are certified by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification or the Forest Stewardship Council.
AXA, which is also a founding member of the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures initiative, has also joined the World Heritage Sites initiative, launched by the United Nations Principles for Sustainable Insurance and WWF1, and pledged exclude certain activities from its insurance business in order to protect the biodiversity reserves identified by UNESCO.
Thomas Buberl, CEO of AXA, said: “Forests represent 80% of the Earth’s biodiversity and play an essential role in the fight against climate change. AXA has been a pioneer in the financial industry by adopting, in 2013, restrictions on unsustainable palm oil operations to protect stressed ecosystems. In the face of the climate emergency, and prior to the COP26, we are proud to extend our commitments and announce new measures to fight deforestation, protect forest ecosystems, and preserve biodiversity.”