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Sustainable Real Assets

Investing with impact in real assets

Real estate, farmland, timberland, and infrastructure investments can all be made with ESG concerns / impact / sustainability in mind.

Within this list, Nuveen provides a couple of papers that describe real estate megatrends as well as specific real asset investment opportunities arising from mass urbanization. Fidante opines on the operational side of ESG integration for real asset investors, and several authors discuss sustainability issues relating to timber investments.

sustainable real assets


The role of real assets in shaping a sustainable future (Aviva Investors, 2019)

For compliance reasons, this paper is only accessible in certain geographies

This report focuses on the impact that real assets have on climate transition and the role they play in supporting UN SDGs. Selecting managers who prioritize ESG policies is a key part of achieving overall ESG goals for real asset investors.

Structural Megatrends in Real Estate: Engaging the Future (Nuveen, 2019)

This report is a collaborative effort between Nuveen Real Estate and MIPIM. It includes thoughts on the main drivers of structural changes that the authors believe are most relevant in shaping the future of real estate.

The impact of climate change on real estate lending and investment (CISL, 2019)

Authored by the University of Cambridge's Institute for Sustainability Leadership, this report shows how investors and lenders can make use of well-established insurance models, tools and metrics to improve their management of some of the physical risks of climate change.

Valuing Sustainability in Infrastructure Investments (WWF/Cadmus, 2019)

The objective of this WWF/Cadmus report is to assist in the effort towards integrating ESG considerations into infrastructure investment processes.

Practical considerations for listed infrastructure (FTSE Russell, 2019)

Infrastructure assets can generate steady income streams, have higher dividend yields, and a more resilient income profile during times of downturns in equity markets.

Infrastructure: Tulips Disguised as Toll Roads (Mellon Capital, 2019)

The infrastructure spending boom may mean that some infrastructure assets are overvalued and that private infrastructure assets have become riskier than public ones. Experts at Mellon Capital explain the value proposition within the infrastructure industry.

Determining real assets contribution to asset allocation (Amundi AM)

For compliance reasons, this paper is NOT accessible in the United States

In this paper by Amundi, the authors discuss how an optimal allocation of 30% real assets (going beyond just real estate or REITs to include business loans, real estate loans, infrastructure, private equity, and infrastructure debt) can help to weather financial crises by reducing portfolio risk.

Upcoming Urbanites: Urbanization drives major economic shifts (Nuveen, Apr 2019)

Nuveen describes alternative investment opportunities in agriculture, infrastructure, impact investing, and real estate that have arisen as a result of mass urbanization.

ESG Investing: Operational excellence in real assets (Fidante, 2019)

Written to complement a previous trilogy of papers on ESG investing in real assets, this report focuses on the operational side of ESG integration throughout the lifecycle of an investment in real assets.

Adding ESG Transparency to Real Estate (S&P Dow Jones Indices, 2019)

S&P Dow Jones Indices describes the ESG facets of real estate companies and the process of creating their Doe Jones Green Real Estate Indices.

Timber: sustainable material, sustainable investment (Pictet AM, May 2019)

New technology may make timber the ultimate sustainable material. With that plus its naturally versatile and renewable nature, Pictet Asset Management believes that investors should take note.

Scaling Impact Investment in Forestry (Global Impact Investing Network, 2019)

What sort of opportunities does the forestry sector present to impact-oriented investors? This paper delves into common revenue sources for impact investment funds that are active in forestry, as well as other topics.

Timberland and Farmland in a Mixed Asset Portfolio (Manulife AM, 2019)

For compliance reasons, this paper is only accessible in the EMEA region

This article by Manulife Asset Management compares the risk and return profile of farmland and timberland investments to CRE and other financial assets.

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