PSI Initiative Performs Triple Jump in Global Insurance Hub to Mark its Second Anniversary

Jay Owen Green Prosperity, SRI/ESG News

 May and June has been a historical period for the environmental movement, which was highlighted by the inaugural United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) in Nairobi.


Environmental policy makers at UNEA understood the need to mobilise private finance for sustainable development and showed keen interest in engaging with the financial community. Against the UNEA backdrop, UNEP FI and others organized a Symposium on Financing a Green Economy, which discussed the critical importance of finance in enabling the transition to a green and inclusive economy. The focus of the Symposium was on the rules, policies, regulations, and standards necessary to shape the financial system and drive the allocation of capital. 


In parallel to UNEA, the Principles for Sustainable Insurance Initiative (PSI) celebrated its two-year anniversary with the launch of a new project on global resilience. The Global Resilience Project launch was marked by the release of a report that outlines the initial findings of Phase 1. This brings the number of new reports released in May and June to four, all of which are featured in the Publication’s section of this Newsletter. 


I hope you find the updates included in this newsletter to be of interest and welcome any thoughts, queries or comments.    


Yours sincerely,






Charles Anderson


UNEP Finance Initiative




PSI Initiative Performs Triple Jump in Global Insurance Hub to Mark its Second Anniversary

Click picture above for video message by UNEP Executive Director

London, a global hub for insurance and financial services, was the venue of a series of major events in June for the UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) Initiative. These events marked the second year anniversary of the launch of the PSI Initiative at the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development.


On 25 June, His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, and UNEP Executive Director and UN Under-Secretary-General, Achim Steiner, delivered keynote addresses on the final day of the 50th Annual Seminar of the International Insurance Society (IIS).


Achim Steiner, in his keynote address, articulated the important role of the insurance industry in tackling global sustainability challenges, announcing the launch of the first report of the PSI Global Resilience Project (see UN press release) and the aims of the UNEP Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System. That day also marked a UN summit on the role of the financial and private sector in disaster resilience, co-hosted by the IIS and the Willis Group. Other keynote speakers … read more


As indisputable evidence from around the world continues to mount concerning the costs and disruptive impacts that climate change will have on the economy, world governments have started preparations to find global agreement in 2015 on how to cope with the challenge.


For the finance sector climate change is a complex, two-fold challenge: not only are the consequences of climate change a serious risk to financial performance, and stability; enabling the transition to a low-carbon and climate-resilient economy, in order to lessen these impacts, requires trillions of USD of finance that can only be provided by financial markets and the investment community.


On the road to the decisive COP21 in Paris next year, UNEP FI will play four critical roles at the interface of governments and the finance sector. These are:

  1. Facilitating finance sector advocacy for effective climate policies
  2. Promoting finance sector leadership and best practice on climate change
  3. Demystifying private finance to the international climate process
  4. Demystifying climate change to the financial community

For further information about these activities, please contact [email protected].

    upcomingactivitiesUpcoming Activities

View Upcoming Activities 

UNEP FI’s Annual Meeting


15 October

United Nations Headquarters, Geneva




We cordially invite you to attend the 2014 UNEP FI Annual Meeting

being held at UN Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland on 15th October


This year the Annual Meeting is designed to provide Members with an opportunity to meet with their international peers, to voice their opinions on the UNEP FI Strategy and future activities and more importantly to interact with keynote speakers from organizations such as UNEP, the IPCC, the Brazilian Central Bank, S&P and the Bank for International Settlements. 

The morning session will be reserved to UNEP FI members only, while the afternoon one will be open to the public.


In addition to the UNEP FI Annual Meeting you will have the opportunity to attend the 2014 UNCTAD World Investment Forum “Investing in Sustainable Development”. To be opened by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the Forum will invite investors and CEOs from the private sector to interact directly with Heads of Government and senior policy makers from 13-16 October at UN Headquarters in Geneva. The Forum is expected to gather up to 2,000 high-level participants and will consist of over twenty events, including side events hosted by UNEP FI such as the 2014 Sustainable Stock Exchange Global Dialogue. We will keep you updated on the Forum especially about sessions relevant for members.


For more information about the World Investment Forum please visit the website.


Registration for the UNEP FI Annual Meeting and the World Investment Forum is available by clicking here. Please note once again that the morning session will be for UNEP FI members only, while the afternoon one will be open to the public. We kindly request the selection of the right session(s) when registering.


2014 Sustainable Stock Exchanges Global Dialogue 


14 October, Geneva 


On the Tuesday 14 October 2014, the 4th biennial Sustainable Stock Exchanges Global Dialogue will take place at the United Nations Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. The flagship event of the Sustainable Stock Exchange Initiative convened by UNEP FI and others will bring together CEO’s of stock exchanges, companies and institutional investors, alongside high-level policy makers and capital market regulators. This unique gathering offers a global platform to demonstrate leadership and understanding of the sustainability-related opportunities and challenges facing the capital markets today. Stock exchanges will demonstrate progress, while highlighting challenges and opportunities that can benefit from policy innovation. Market participants will share experiences which can assist exchanges and their regulators in their efforts to better incorporate sustainable development into capital markets. 


To register for this event, click here. This will take you to UNCTAD’s World Investment Forum 2014  registration page, which includes the 2014 SSE Global Dialogue event and the UNEP FI Annual Meeting. 


More information here.


View Publications 

Building Disaster-Resilient Communities and Economies


The PSI Initiative launched the Global Resilience Project, which aims to tackle natural disaster risk by identifying the most effective measures to combat disasters and helping communities implement them.


Led by Insurance Australia Group, the PSI Global Resilience Project has just completed its first phase. This assessed the effectiveness of a range of disaster risk reduction measures across the three most devastating types of natural hazard-cyclone, earthquake and flood. The findings are outlined in a new report, Building disaster-resilient communities and economies.


View the report here.


View the press release here.


Climate Change: Implications for Investors and Financial Institutions


In partnership with Cambridge University and IIGCC, UNEP FI has developed a summary and fast-track guide to the findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on the physical, economic, and regulatory impacts of climate change from a finance sector perspective.



View the report here.


View the press release here.


Integrated Governance – A New Model of Governance for Sustainability


Developed in collaboration with leading governance experts from Harvard Business School and UNEP FI’s Asset Management Working Group (AMWG), the report proposes a model of Integrated Governance that puts sustainability at the heart of governance and corporate boards’ strategic agendas. 


The Integrated Governance model is the system by which companies are directed and controlled, in which sustainability issues are integrated in a way that ensures value creation for the company and beneficial results for all stakeholders in the long term. The report illustrates the inadequacies of current corporate governance practices and outlines three phases that help companies move towards Integrated Governance, leading to a holistic integration of sustainability in their corporate strategies.


View the report here.


A Webinar presentation of the report will be hosted by the PRI on Wednesday, 6 August, at 4pm GMT. To register, click here.


Sustainability Metrics: Translation and Impact on Property Investment and Management

The report provides a framework for a corporate real estate sustainability management (CRESM) system for property investment and management organizations, and offers a pragmatic three level approach (corporate, portfolio and single building level) that aims to help the industry manage the complexity of sustainability metrics and to organize information flows more efficiently. 


Led by the UNEP FI Property Working Group and developed by the Centre for Real Estate at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), the report was brought about through the support of RICS, the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC).


View the report here.


View the recorded PRI webinar presentation of the report here.


Fill out the feedback questionnaire here


More information here.


View News

Principles for Sustainable Insurance Initiative Breaks Ground in North America 


North America was the focus of the UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) Initiative in May as interest in the pioneering initiative continues to grow around the world.


PSI Programme Leader Butch Bacani of UNEP FI spoke about the aims of the PSI Initiative at the Ceres Conference in Boston. His presentation included flagship activities such as the PSI Global Resilience Project, which seeks to reduce disaster risk from cyclones, floods and earthquakes-hazards that have led to massive economic, social and human losses globally. 


Barbara Turley-McIntyre of Canada’s The Co-operators Group and Mark Way and Laural Warren of the global reinsurer, Swiss Re, showed how their companies are implementing the four Principles for Sustainable Insurance in their core business strategies and operations, such as in risk management and underwriting. They also explained the significance of the PSI Initiative in driving widespread action on … read more


Engaging with Private Sector Actors in REDD+ : UNEP FI collaborates with Paraguay’s National Joint Programme 


On 10 June 2014, the Ministry of Environment (SEAM), the National Forestry Institute (INFONA) and the Federation for the Self-Determination of Indigenous Peoples (FAPI) held a workshop on behalf of the National Joint Programme of Paraguay in Asunción. Participants included ADM, Agencia Financiera de Desarrollo, Althelia Ecosphere, Banco Continental, Banco Nacional de Fomento, PAYCO, RTRS, Sudameris, Unique Paraguay and Vision Banco.


The workshop gauged possible mechanisms for engaging the private sector in REDD+. Discussions focused on different interventions that have the possibility of incentivizing the adoption of more sustainable agricultural production systems as … read more


Mobilizing Private Finance for Resource Efficiency Discussed at EU Green Week, 4 June, Brussels


The EU Green Week, hosted by the European Commission and known as the biggest annual conference on European environment policy, focused this year on Circular Economy, Resource Efficiency and Waste. The Conference provided a platform for participants from Government, business and industry, environmental associations, academia and the media, to exchange best practices and ideas on how to enable and accelerate EU transition to a low-carbon … read more 


Second Annual Forum on Sustainable Finance in Turkey, 16 May, Istanbul


The multi-stakeholder platform on sustainable finance in Turkey was organized for the second year by the Business Council for Sustainable Development Turkey, the UN Global Compact Turkey and UNEP FI, with the support of Garanti Bank and ?ekerbank. The 2014 edition, hosted by Borsa Istanbul, used ‘shared responsibility’ as the underlying theme for the day’s … read more 


View Training

Upcoming Environmental & Social Risk Analysis (ESRA) Online Courses in English, Spanish and French



“Thank you for a very informative course. I now have the skills to look at credit from a sustainability perspective as opposed to profit only”

Moses Mugo, Senior Credit Analyst, KCB, Kenya


The ESRA Training Programme is one of the most well-respected trainings on the topic available to practitioners around the world. Since its beginnings in 2005, it has provided a regular and increasingly diversified resource to risk managers, credit analysts and relationship managers. The ESRA Training Programme has been offered in English, French, Spanish and related trainings have also happened in other languages such as Portuguese and Japanese.



Next ESRA Courses in 2014: 


 More information and registration:



To get in touch with the UNEP FI Secretariat, please contact [email protected] or visit us at