På kyrkogården, längs en gammal mur växer stora knotiga träd. Längre bort syns ett vindkraftverk.
Foto: Nille Leander /Ikon

Sustainable Investments 2022

Performance in 2022 including bank and management fees amounted to SEK -1,095 million (SEK 1,960 million the previous year). Returns for the overall portfolio amounted to -9.5% (19.8%) This is 4.6 percentage points lower than our benchmark index. The market value of the assets invested as of 31 December 2022 amounted to SEK 10,324 million (previous year SEK 11,519 million).

This is the twelfth year in a row that the Church of Sweden has published a report on its work with sustainability issues in asset management at the national level. This report, as previously, has been produced by the financial staff after consultation with the Central Board Asset Management Council. Asset management in dioceses, parishes and congregations are not included in this report. 

Sustainable investment activities are conducted throughout the Church of Sweden.
Read about our work on our website Sustainable Investment

Två brandmän står och tittar på ett sönderbombat hus.
Foto: Ukrainian Police Department Press Service /AP/TT/Ikon

The year in brief

2022 is a year that has been characterised by the war in Ukraine. The humanitarian crises in the wake of the war has been enormous and millions of people are in flight. On the anniversary of the Russian attack on Ukraine the church bells in Uppsala again rang for peace.

The year began in the hope that the Covid19-pandemic would abate and that the economic recovery that began in 2021 would continue. The war in Ukraine dashed hopes of a recovery and reinforced inflationary problems as well as the shortage of energy that were laid during the pandemic. Central banks implemented vigorous interest rate increases in an attempt to rein in inflation. Concerns about weakened global economic growth also gradually increased. 

After a three-year period of exceptionally high returns on the stock market, a downturn began to take hold. Swedish shares sank by almost 23%. Global shares and shares in emerging markets, converted into Swedish kronor, fell by nearly 6% and 8% respectively.  

Fixed income securities and corporate bonds fell by nearly 8% and 11% respectively. It was a historically weak year for the fixed-income asset class and the negative return is mainly explained by sharply rising bond interest rates.  

The year was thus weak in terms of returns for both the shares and fixed-income asset classes. Expansive monetary policy from central banks and rising valuation multiples that drove the rise in previous years have turned into their opposite. The result was SEK -1,095 million, corresponding to a return of -9.5%. Asset management's ten-year streak of positive returns was thus broken in 2022. 

During the year, two major environment-related meetings took place. The first, the COP27 Climate Change Summit in Sharm El Sheikh, continued to affirm the 1.5-degree target, but experts noted that at the current rate of change and ambition it would be difficult to reach1.  

The second meeting was the United Nations Conference on Biodiversity COP15, in Montreal, where a new global framework was adopted, the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework2. The framework is considered a milestone and contains, among other things, goals that are expected to contribute to reversing the negative trend in biodiversity. A clear goal is the 30 x 30 Goal, which aims for at least 30% of the world's land and marine resources to be under protection by 2030.  

Read more about how we work with the climate issue and other sustainability issues further on this report. 

New investments

During 2022 we invested in SEB Nordic Green Energy. This fund invests in solar parks, geothermal energy, hydropower plants, cogeneration and solutions for energy storage primarily in Sweden but also in the rest of the Nordic region. Our fund investment is in part congruent with identifying interesting investments within the alternative investments asset class with a clear focus on sustainability, for example, the climate issue. We also continued to invest in microfinance through SEB Microfinance Fund X and real estate through a five-year extension of the investment in Domestica Bostäder II. 

Read more on our website, About our Sustainable Investments

Commission, management model and follow-up

The commission given to us by the Central Board of the Church of Sweden focuses expressly on the long-term performance of asset management for the Church of Sweden at the national level.  The overall target return is 3% per annum above inflation measured in rolling ten-year periods. 

The model we employ in our asset management to achieve this target consists of the allocation of assets, i.e. division among asset-class types, as well as their choice of fund manager and follow-up. 

The rate of return target in real terms that was set in 2000 at 6% per annum, was then lowered to 4% per annum in 2001 and has since 2010 been at 3% per annum. 

The follow-up of the sustainability aspects in asset management focuses on climate and environmental issues, human rights and corruption in order to ensure good ethical management and to contribute to the UN's sustainability goals and the Paris Agreement regarding limitations on global warming. This follow-up is supported by what is stated in the financial policy and investment guidelines for ethics and sustainability 

Read more on our website, About our Sustainable Investments

Financial development in the long-term

Asset Management over 10 years

From a ten-year perspective our portfolio is robust. Between the years 2013-2022, the cumulative return was 126.4%, corresponding to an average return of 8.5% per annum. The return target for the same period was 68.1%, corresponding to 5.3% per annum (see Figure 1 below). 

Figure 1 - Actual return, return target and inflation (CPI) 2013-2022

Asset management has exceeded the return target eight of the last ten years. The outcome for individual years can of course vary greatly, as can be seen from the bar chart (see Figure 2 below). 

Figure 2 - Actual return, return target and benchmark index 2013-2022

Asset Management since the turn of the millennium: a 23-year period

Part of the agreement made between the Church and the national government in the 1990s was to transfer the capital previously managed by the Legal, Financial and Administrative Services Agency (Kammarkollegiet) from the state to the Church of Sweden in connection with the coming change in relations in 2000. 

The strong development of recent years led to the return in 2021 catching up with and surpassing the cumulative return target if measured since the start in 2000. 
However, 2022's negative development in relation to this year's target return, which during this year was approximately three times as high as in previous years as a result of the strong inflation, has led to the return since the start now being below the accumulated target return.  

  The very weak stock markets in 2001, 2002 and 2008 are the primary reason behind the weak return during the first decade in the 21st century (see Figure 3 below). 

Figure 3 - Actual return, return target and inflation (CPI) 2000-2022

Result, return and assets 2022

The result for 2022 for the Church of Sweden's asset management at the national level amounted to SEK -1 095 million. This corresponds to a return of -9.5% (benchmark index -4.9%). 

For eight out of the past ten years, returns have exceeded the weighted reference portfolio’s benchmark index, but the return for 2022 was 4.6 percentage points lower than this index. The primary reason for this is that our managers of Swedish and global shares did not reach index returns. Our underweight in Swedish shares made a positive contribution relative to the benchmark index as Swedish shares developed weakly during the year. 

The market value of the assets invested as of 31 December  2022 amounted to SEK 10,324 million (previous year SEK 11,519 million). In December, a withdrawal of SEK 100 million was made from asset management to liquidity management at the Church of Sweden's national level. 


Allocation based upon a Strategic Reference Portfolio 

To create pre-requisites making it possible to achieve the long-term target, we use a strategic reference portfolio that we then also use as a reference portfolio when evaluating our asset management against the ten-year time horizon. 

Depending on how the different markets develop, the distribution, i.e. allocation, among the asset classes in our portfolio, is constantly changing. 

The allocation between the asset classes is shown in Figure 4; Return per asset class, Table 1 and the Largest shareholdings in Table 2. 

Equity management

Equity management constitutes the portfolio's largest asset class and contributed negatively during the year with -1,067 million SEK, corresponding to a return of -9.3%. The biggest negative contributors were global shares, which had a negative return of -13.1% (index -5.7%), which contributed -4.7 percentage points to the portfolio's total return. Swedish shares returned -26.8% (index -22.8%), which contributed -4.0 percentage points to the total return. 

 All managers within the Swedish and global shares asset classes performed more poorly than their respective benchmark indices. 
The managers in emerging markets, on the other hand, performed better than the index and as a group they were 2.1 percentage points better than their benchmark index (-5.8% compared to the index which ended at -7.9%). Emerging markets contributed -0.5 percentage points to the return on the total portfolio. 

Fixed income investments

For the second year in a row, and for only the second time since the turn of the millennium, fixed income management produced a negative return. Vigorously increased interest rates and increased credit spreads led to the Fixed Income asset class returning -7.8%, which was slightly better than the index, which was down by -8.1%. Fixed Income assets contributed negatively to the portfolio by -1.3 percentage points. Corporate bonds produced a negative return of -11.0% during the year and contributed negatively to the portfolio by -0.6 percentage points. The asset class still beat the index, which was down by -13.8%. 

Real estate

Real Estate produced a result of a total of SEK 124.4 million, corresponding to a return of 11.0% and contributed 1.1 percentage points to the return for the total portfolio. The return was 4.3 percentage points lower than the benchmark index which was 15.3% (CPI + 3%). The high inflation of 12.3% yielded a very high real estate benchmark index in 2022. The market value of the properties amounted to SEK 1,263.8 million. From this turn of the year, value was based on preliminary valuations as of 31/12/2022. In previous years, the value was based on revised valuations that were determined only after a month or so into the new year and thus only reported the following year. This means that the result for 2022 will be an effect of the development in 2021 and 2022 meeting the year-end valuations as of 31-12-2020. The new principle means that we get more up-to-date values. 

Alternative investments

During the period January-December, alternative investments produced a positive result of SEK 74.4 million, which yielded a return of 7.7% This corresponds to just over half of our benchmark index of CPI + 3% (which for 2022 concluded at 15.3%). The result contributed positively by 0.6 percentage points to the portfolio's total return. The market value of the alternative investments as of 31 December 2022 amounted to SEK 1,062.2 million.
The ongoing valuation of properties and alternative investments that are illiquid assets is associated with uncertainty. In the vast majority of our holdings within this asset class, one has to wait until maturity before the result can be determined. 

Figure 4 - Distribution between asset classes on 31 December 2022 

Table 1 -   Earnings and return 2022 per asset class and a five-year overview 

Table 2 - Our largest holdings in shares as of 31 December 2022 

Portfolio sustainability 2022: a selection

The church ordinance has established the qualitative sustainability criterion in the writing in the second paragraph of chapter 51. The capital must also be managed in an ethically defensible manner in accordance with the church's fundamental values. There is a financial policy to ensure efficient follow-up of sustainability, 3 on the basis of which a set of instructions is drawn up for the asset managers who are hired. The instructions set sustainability requirements for placement and follow-up of underlying holdings in the portfolio. Asset management has approximately 400 individual securities in nearly 30 different funds with 13 different counterparties, i.e. asset managers. The asset managers are carefully selected with the help of external analysis support to ensure good competence and ability regarding sustainability. In order to follow up the work of the asset managers, a screening of the entire portfolio is done with the help of an external supplier against the financial policy's ethical criteria, which are usually summarized as ESG criteria, i.e. environment, social aspects and corporate governance (environmental, social and governance). Sustainability is also a theme in the regular dialogue with the managers.   

The national level's financial portfolio has high ratings and meets the Paris Agreement requirements. 

The Church Board has signed the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, PRI4, and the national level participates in a number of other national and international initiatives that directly link to the sustainability risks identified in the portfolio.  

The portfolio generally exhibits high ratings for sustainability with relatively few serious incidents and other violations of international frameworks. This applies both when looking at what goods and services the companies manufacture, and what the manufacturing process itself looks like, i.e. working conditions in the company’s own, or suppliers' factories, emissions to air, land and water, and so on.  

The climate profile in the portfolio is also clearly and in line with the goal of global warming of less than two degrees compared to pre-industrial times. The Paris Agreement aims to limit global warming to a maximum of 1.5 degrees on average at a global level, a goal that we are unfortunately about to violate. The UN climate panel’s latest report5 from March 20, 2023, clearly indicates that the intensity and extent of climate work in the world today is insufficient to be able to stop global warming. This report states that the world is approaching the critical tipping point for when the negative effects are irreversible. 

An independent climate analysis of the share and bond portfolio was carried out latest in 2019 with the support of the calculation tool PACTA to ensure that our asset management develops in line with the Paris Agreement's goal of a maximum of 1.5 degrees of global warming. According to PACTA's analysis, the portfolio's climate-affecting emissions are overall low.  

During 2022 the Church of Sweden became a member in the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC)6 and a climate-commitment for investors linked to membership was signed.7 This means that the national level of asset management is committed to halving emissions in the portfolio by 2030 and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 at the latest.  

During 2023, the finance unit will develop clear objectives in line with the commitments for 2030 and 2050. In that work, a so-called baseline is also produced for the emissions from asset management at the national level. 

Deviation management 

At year-end 2022, a sustainability review of the national financial portfolio was carried out using Sustainalytics' screening tool. The result8 of the review confirmed that the holdings in the portfolio largely live up to the financial policy. Some less serious deviations were identified and are being followed up and dealt with in dialogue with the asset managers.  Most deviations concern work environment problems, lack of trade union rights, integrity issues and suspicions of forced labour, as well as issues related to corruption. The deviations are assessed based on the degree of seriousness based on the Church of Sweden's financial policy and Sustainalytics' model for flagging deviations as well as the Church Office's own assessment. All cases, regardless of severity, are handled by Sustainalytics in line with their dialogue model. The deviations are also a basis for the national level information gathering from, and dialogues with, our asset managers.  

The Church Office's overall assessment is that the degree of seriousness of the deviations is low and that the number of deviations does not deviate abnormally from a normal year. The handling of these deviation largely takes place through dialogues with the asset managers in the spring of 2023 to ensure that the holdings comply with the financial policy and are monitored by the church office based on the degree of seriousness. During 2022, notified deviations have not led to any direct bilateral dialogue with any of the holdings in the portfolio. 

In addition to this screening, an extended analysis was made of holdings in various industries that are judged to be particularly risky from a human rights perspective, such as the tech/IT, automotive, textile and food industries, to ensure that the holdings achieve the financial policy's requirements for societal benefit and responsible behaviour. This was done using established rankings based on well-documented external analyses9. Overall, the assessment is that the holdings in most cases within these industries, are holdings that are considered to be at the forefront, but that there are reasons to study some of the holdings a little more closely, based on how the financial policy is formulated. 

Russia's war of invasion 

In connection with Russia's invasion of Ukraine, a comprehensive portfolio screening was conducted for sanctions violations and direct business links to Russia and Belarus, where no indications were noted. The issue of sanctions violations will continue to be monitored in 2023. 

Other important initiatives for the Church of Sweden linked to sustainability goals and human rights 

Investors in the Global Goals in Agenda 2030 

Since 2016, we have been participating in the Swedish Investors for Sustainable Development (SISD), which aims to promote investments within the 17 global goals for sustainable development in Agenda 2030 (Sustainable Development Goals) adopted by world leaders in 2015. Within this context, we have led the work in Clean Water and Sanitation (goal 6) and Sustainable Cities and Communities (goal 11) and were part of a reference group for the global equivalent, Global Investors for Sustainable Development Alliance, GISD. SISD brings together about twenty of Sweden's largest investors.  

Investors Integrity Forum against corruption 

Corruption damages both companies’ profitability and investors' returns. In addition, corruption spreads like a wet-blanket over all work with the environment and working conditions in the companies. The Church of Sweden therefore started an investor group within Transparency International Sweden in the autumn of 2021, in response to the fact that we as investors need a better understanding of how companies work against corruption and how this work can be improved. Transparency International is a global organisation that disseminates knowledge on how to combat corruption in all its forms. Every year they publish an index in which they rank the countries of the world. Sweden as a nation is among the best, but we have had several companies receiving criticism in recent years. The investor group within Transparency International Sweden calls itself the Investors Integrity Forum10 and addresses itself primarily to Swedish companies, in order to both provide support and to move efforts forward so that the companies work more thoroughly to reduce the risks of corruption. 

Examples of further initiatives 

In the Global Network Initiative, GNI, the Church of Sweden collaborates with other investors, telecom and social media companies, civil society organisations and academia on freedom of expression issues in the IT/tech industry globally. Freedom of expression issues linked to rapid global digital transformation are becoming increasingly pressing. Authoritarian regimes are increasingly taking advantage of the opportunities to use IT technology to limit democracy and make it difficult for defenders of human rights and environmental defenders - not least in conflicts11. During 2022, the Church of Sweden entered into two new, thematic follow-up dialogues within the framework of Sustainalytics' investor cooperation. One is about human rights in the companies' supply chain, and one about how the companies handle the issue of biological diversity. 


New green fund and final reporting of a concluded sustainability fund 

New green infrastructure fund in the portfolio  

During the year, we invested in a newly started fund that targets green infrastructure in energy in the Nordic countries, mainly Sweden. For example, the fund will invest in new solar parks and upgrade smaller hydropower plants, so that they can meet the new tougher environmental law requirements in the EU and Sweden. The fund also intends to invest in offshore wind power, as well as in various technologies for energy storage, such as battery development or hydrogen. Energy efficiency is also crucial to coping with climate change and a safer electricity market. The fund will therefore, for example, contribute to investments in geothermal heating in various types of properties and convert heating plants to cogeneration plants.  

A microfinance fund for the sustainability goals is concluded

The third microfinance fund invested in by the Church of Sweden in the last decade was concluded during the year. According to its own calculations, the fund has reached 14 million borrowers, of which 49% were women. It has contributed to over 250,000 jobs in a total of the 45 countries in which the fund has been active. The fund has thus contributed to the global sustainability goals12 No Poverty (goal 1), Gender Equality (goal 5) and Decent Working and Economic Growth (goal 8). 


The Church of Sweden as a responsible investor

The Church of Sweden wants to be a leader within sustainable development. The foundation for our work is the Church Ordinance, the financial policy and its investment guidelines for ethics and sustainability. 

From the financial policy: "The Church of Sweden wants to contribute to the solutions for sustainable development in our world. The managers of the Church of Sweden's capital are therefore expected to choose companies based on societal benefits, for which the global development goals provide guidance. This means that, e.g. companies through their goods and services contribute to sustainable development or work systematically and purposefully with issues related to the environment, working conditions, human rights and poverty reduction, where it has a bearing on their businesses. This also refers to issues that regard corporate governance, i.e. corruption, remuneration systems and transparency.” 

Active asset management

The number of company-related securities in the Church of Sweden's portfolio, such as shares and corporate bonds, amounts to around 400, which is a comparatively low figure. This is because we only focus on active management, where the managers choose individual companies that they follow closely. The opposite, passive management, where the asset manager constructs a portfolio that reflects its benchmark index.  This often leads to having thousands of companies in the overall portfolio. It goes without saying that it is then not possible to follow every single company. The process becomes more automated and the price tag is, therefore, significantly lower. 

However, we believe in active management because we can then avoid being owners of companies that do not meet the standards from a sustainability perspective, including a financial perspective. Our financial policy with accompanying instructions to our contracted asset managers for the 30 different funds, screens out around half of the companies on a global index for sustainability reasons such as the connection to, for example, weapons, fossil energy and tobacco. On the other hand, we feel that it is important and useful to also try and influence not only our own holdings, but also entire industries, value chains and norms. For example, as long as we have an ongoing climate crisis in the world, we cannot ignore the fact that other actors are still financing new investments in fossil energy. We can then use the tools that are available in addition to creating a sustainable portfolio, namely various forms of influence. 

Signatory to Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) 

The Church of Sweden, like most capital owners and asset managers who work with sustainability, is a signatory to the six principles that PRI developed in 2006. This means that we include sustainability issues both in our own analyses, and in our work, to influence the companies and other actors in the value chain, such as the managers we hire or the legislators and other decision-makers who set the framework for our work. For this reason we are active in several networks for investors where we together drive change towards a more sustainable financial industry.

How we exert influence 

In accordance with the above, the Church of Sweden has a strategy for exerting influence at various levels. At the core of this strategy are the asset managers we have chosen. Firstly, we address various issues regarding sustainable value creation in the portfolio with them and secondly, discuss the actual portfolio holdings. The next level is to look at issues that companies need to act on in the near future, such as climate, biodiversity and human rights. Then we can get involved in various initiatives that drive these issues forward among the listed companies that have the greatest negative impact. The more overarching part of the strategy is to try to influence legislators to create a more effective game-plan. With laws and regulations that promote sustainable businesses and slow down or stop businesses that destroy or risk our future, it will be much easier to run companies in a sustainable manner, and then we who finance the companies can more easily do what is right. 

Internal collaboration 

Internal cooperation with both Act Svenska Kyrkan (Act Church of Sweden) and purchasing collaboration within the Church of Sweden also constitute important sources of information and influence for the work with asset management. Through Act Svenska Kyrkan, we receive reports on, among other things, the actions of Swedish companies in low and middle-income countries and gain access to local voices, a unique position that not many investors have. From the purchasing side, we get access to more in-depth analyses about the situation in companies' value chains, such as the report on the IT/tech industry and the human rights situation for Uighurs in Xinjiang, China.13 


Solceller på tak
Montering av solceller på ett tak Foto: Gustaf Hellsing

Responsible owner in the climate issue

The Church of Sweden tries to contribute to meeting the climate threat in its asset management, and since 2008 has had a consistent climate strategy for the entire portfolio at the national level, as shown in the financial policy. 

From the financial policy: ”The Church of Sweden perceives climate change as a serious threat to creation and the basic living conditions on our planet and therefore does not invest in companies engaged in the extraction of fossil energy sources such as coal, oil and gas, or energy production that largely consist of fossil fuels. Thus, we do not invest in, e.g. oil sands or shale gas. Asset managers of the Church of Sweden's capital are instead expected to invest in companies that in a constructive manner contribute to resolving climate issues.” 

The current rate of adjustment for the sake of the climate is not sufficient 

In 2022, the world emerged from a long period of pandemic restrictions and the mills of global industrial production began grinding again to catch up with supplies and pacify demand. The war of invasion that Russia launched in Ukraine in February 2022 worsened the European energy and inflation crisis, which, together with the energy transition that is taking place, dampened the negative emission trend in Europe, according to the International Energy Council, IEA.14 Globally, however, the world is back on an increasing emissions trajectory, despite the agreement in the Paris Agreement. 2022 was the sixth warmest year on record globally and the second warmest year in Europe. The temperature of the entire planet was on average 1.1 degrees higher than in pre-industrial times.15 It is the eighth year in a row that the planet's so-called “state of fever” has been above one degree (1°C). According to the researchers, with the current emissions trajectory and the climate commitments formulated by states, we are on the way to upwards of three degrees of warming by 2100.  That would spell disaster for life on Earth and human civilization as we know it. The assessment of the experts is that we only have ten years to stop the development from risking that we reach a permanent greenhouse-like state in the long term.16 This is, among other things, the reason for more and more calls worldwide that the situation must be considered an emergency.17 

The planet is warming much more around the poles than at the equator, so in Sweden the average temperature has already increased by 1.7° C according to The Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI) from 2020. In some northern parts of the country, the warming is over two degrees³. This has consequences for flora and fauna, and for people who are dependent on functioning ecosystems, for example in the tourism industry, the reindeer industry and the forest industry. Between 1990 and 2021, Sweden had a reduction in greenhouse gases of 33%, but in 2021 emissions increased by 3.5%, which is an alarming break in the trend, according to the latest available statistics from the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency.18 

A positive report from 2022 is that, for the first time, electricity production from wind and solar is greater than electricity production from other sources in the EU, greater than both, for example, the fossil sources gas and coal. This despite the increasing production of electricity from gas and coal due to Russia's war of invasion.19 


The tone from the top  – two voices in 2022 

The Church of Sweden at the climate summit in Egypt 

With its observer status during COP27, the Church of Sweden had delegates on site to follow the negotiations.  

“Environment, climate and biological diversity regard our Christian faith, therefore, representatives from the Church of Sweden and Act Church of Sweden and I will be present at COP27,” said Bishop Andreas Holmberg before the summit. 20   

Through the international work, Act Svenska Kyrkan, the Swedish Church together with other church actors pushed for COP27 to result in four commitments. 

  • Heightened ambitions to reach the 1.5 degree target. 
  • That the world's emission-heavy countries must live up to the commitment of climate finance of 100 billion dollars per year to the countries that are hit the hardest. 
  • Increased and equal influence for young people, women and the countries affected, in the decisions that are made. 
  •  A new commitment for compensation for loss and damage for the people already living in a climate emergency. 

The most important results of the climate summit were that a fund for loss and damage was decided, but that no new ambitions to reach the 1.5 degree target were adopted. Climate finance ambitions were confirmed but no new targets or commitments were launched.21 

As part of a wider church collaboration with the World Council of Churches and the Act Alliance, a sharp statement was launched at the end of the climate summit:  

“While negotiations stall, people are dying and livelihoods are being lost as a result of the impact of climate change. Time is running out and it is unacceptable if world leaders do not take clear and decisive action within the few remaining days of COP27.” 22 


En grupp människor med protestskyltar
Biskop Andreas Holmberg var en av Svenska kyrkans delegater vid klimattoppmötet i Egypten. Foto: Simon Chambers

The UN Secretary-General raises his voice against greenwashing  

UN Secretary-General António Guterres raises the tone23 after a report24 which was released at the climate summit by a UN expert group on the risk of so-called greenwashing, i.e. saying that your company works with sustainability but does not, with various voluntary net-zero emissions initiatives that fossil energy companies and the financial market joined, which the report finds do not meet the UN's quality requirements.  

“I also have a message to fossil fuel companies and their financial enablers. So-called ‘net-zero pledges’ that exclude core products and activities are poisoning our planet. Using bogus ‘net-zero’ pledges to cover up massive fossil fuel expansion is reprehensible. It is rank deception. The sham must end.” 

Guterres believes that the companies and their financiers must adhere to the standard the UN sets for complete transparency about the climate impact that companies have. 


Gråhårig man i en FN-talarstol.
António Guterres, FNs generalsekreterare Foto: Dean Calma / IAEA

Hyperlinks and comments

1. Climate change: No ‘credible pathway’ to 1.5C limit, UNEP warns

2. The final text of the historic Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework

3. Finanspolicy för Svk fastställd 2021-10-04

4. What are the Principles for Responsible Investment?

5. AR6 Synthesis Report: Climate Change 2023 Sid 15 “Climate change has caused substantial damages, and increasingly irreversible losses, in terrestrial, freshwater, cryospheric and coastal and open ocean ecosystems. The extent and magnitude of climate change impacts are larger than estimated in previous assessments”.

6. Institutional investors group on climate change - IIGCC

7. The Paris Aligned Investment Initiative Net Zero Asset Owner Commitment

8. Granskningen visar femton nya avvikelser jämte åtta sedan tidigare pågående ärenden.  Granskningen fann också sexton korruptionsrelaterade avvikelser, varav ett par var nya för året. Fyra av avvikelserna listades som särskilt allvarliga, varav en avvikelse var ny för året, det vill säga ett inte sedan tidigare pågående ärende.

9. Corporate Human Rights Benchmark 
9. Know the Chain 
9. Ranking Digital Rights

10. Investors Integrity Forum (IIF)

11. UN experts highlight digital rights in conflict and humanitarian crises at RightsCon

12. De globala hållbarhetsmålen

13. Adda: Ny rapport undersöker it-leveranskedjorna i Kina
13. Adda: Vårt arbete påverkar elektronikleveranskedjorna

14. IEA: CO2 Emissions in 2022

15. Annual 2022 Global Climate Report

16. PNAS: Trajectories of the Earth System in the Anthropocene
16. SVT: Vi är på väg mot klimatforskarnas värsta scenario

17. Climate Emergency Declaration
17.  The European Parliament declares climate emergency

18. Sveriges utsläpp och upptag av växthusgaser

19. Wind and solar were EU’s top electricity source in 2022 for first time ever

20. Klimatförändringarnas konsekvenser

21. What are the key outcomes of Cop27 climate summit?

22. Faith leaders urgently call for increased ambition in closing days of COP27

23. COP27: UN urges Mark Carney-led climate initiative to meet higher standards

24. Experts Issue Guide to Prevent Net-zero Greenwashing by Non-State Actors

About sustainable investments 

All activities of the Church of Sweden are permeated by long-term thinking and sustainable development for humans and the environment. Therefore, it is obvious that our investments must also be compatible with these values. How this is to be done is expressed in the Church of Sweden's financial policy, which the Central Board of the Church of Sweden has established. Our financial policy rests on two basic principles: the human value principle and the idea of ​​stewardship, which today is reflected in international conventions concerning human rights and the environment. 

Church of Sweden's Financial Policy for the National level 

Instructions for Ethical and Sustainable Investment  
The Church of Sweden’s Asset Management 

Read more on our website, About our Sustainable Investments 

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