A roadmap for pension providers to transition to net zero has been unveiled ahead of COP26.

The roadmap has been published by the Scotland-based Global Ethical Finance Initiative (GEFI) to provide practical steps for pension providers to start taking action now in tackling climate change.

As well as being a useful resource for private pension providers, it is also being sent to all local government pension schemes in Scotland, with several having already engaged with GEFI about the move to net zero.

The transition roadmap has been compiled with input from GEFI’s key partners, including abrdn, who have made climate change mitigation a ‘top priority’.

GEFI believes pension providers should use the power of their investments to drive change in the companies they invest in. This means active engagement with investee companies and voting out directors of major polluters with no transition plans.

Divestment cannot be the primary strategy as this just moves the problem elsewhere and buying carbon offsets should be a ‘last resort’ to deal with residual greenhouse gas emissions – with decarbonisation being the primary focus.

The transition roadmap includes a range of practical steps and actions pension providers can take to overcome the biggest challenges identified by GEFI research: reliable data on emissions, knowledge and expertise of pension fund staff and trustees prioritising climate change. The roadmap also helps pension providers to navigate the plethora of tools, initiatives and frameworks that have been developed in relation to net zero. Pension providers should take action now on tackling climate change and delivering net zero by 2050.

However, the responsibility for net zero cannot be left solely at the door of pension providers. Every company, investors and the whole of society should be pushing for a net zero-carbon future.

Natalie Jackson, executive manager of the Global Ethical Finance Initiative, said: “The eyes of the world being on Glasgow at COP26 presents a great opportunity for Scottish pension providers to demonstrate leadership in taking action on climate change to ensure net zero is delivered by 2050. “Our net zero pension workstream is a direct call to pension providers to increase emissions transparency and develop a tangible strategy to set and/or deliver on net zero commitments, and the roadmap provides a credible set of actions to enable them to do this. “Pension providers need to start taking action to combat climate change now, before it’s too late.”



  • Both the Policy Positioning Paper and the Transition Roadmap can be downloaded here: https://www.pathtocop26.com/workstreams/net-zero-pensions/
  • A photo of Natalie Jackson for publication is available here.
  • More information on the Global Ethical Finance Initiative is available here: www.globalethicalfinance.org
  • If you would like to find out more about GEFI’s net zero pensions workstream and how GEFI can assist you on your net zero journey please contact Natalie Jackson (natalie@globalethicalfinance.org).
  • Contact: Alan Roden at alan@quantumcommunications.co.uk or 07753 904 531