Nippon Life to Make Portfolio Carbon Neutral, Kyodo Says

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Nippon Life Insurance Co., one of the biggest institutional investors in Japan, will aim to make its portfolio carbon neutral by 2050, Kyodo News reported.

Nippon Life’s strategy, which may involve selling off investments seen as inadequate in tackling their carbon emissions, is a first among major Japanese funds, Kyodo reported Saturday, without citing the source of the information. The firm’s roughly 1,500 domestic investments generate about 12 to 13 million tons of carbon dioxide annually, according to Kyodo.

The movement to choose investments based on environmental, social and governance practices has gained momentum relatively recently in Japan compared with many western economies. Tackling carbon emissions in particular has become a focus in recent months following Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s October pledge to decarbonize Japan by 2050.

Starting in the fiscal year from April, the insurer will begin investing in companies actively trying to reduce their carbon emissions, Kyodo reported. Nippon Life couldn’t immediately be reached for comment outside of business hours on Saturday.

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