Fast & fair renewable energy: A practical guide for investors

This briefing sets out how investors can help tackle the climate crisis while respecting human rights in a just transition. It is divided into five snapshots, which provide statistics and case studies highlighting key human rights risks and impacts for each of the major renewable energy subsectors: wind, solar, bioenergy, geothermal, and hydropower. 

For the full briefing and sector-snapshots, see here

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Report
16 July 2019

Executive summary

Author: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

Key Questions Investors Can Ask When Investing in Renewable Energy: 

  • Does the company have a publicly available commitment to respect human rights that refers to internationally recognised human rights norms?  

  • Does the company have a human rights due diligence process in place to identify and address salient human rights risks before they become abuses? 

  • Does the company provide a grievance mechanism to workers and community members when rights abuses occur, as outlined by Principle 31 of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights

  • Does the company expect its suppliers and business partners to adhere to the same human rights standards, and does it include this expectation in contracts and agreements? 

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Article
16 July 2019

Full briefing: "Fast & fair renewable energy: A practical guide for investors"

Author: Business & Human Rights Resource Centre

This briefing sets out how investors can help tackle the climate crisis while respecting human rights in a just transition. It brings lessons from our surveys of 109 renewable energy companies, our investor engagement over the last three years, and insights from an expert advisory group...Evidence shows that there is an urgent need to raise the bar on human rights in the renewable energy sector. Investors will play a pivotal role in this...Companies and investors have a responsibility to respect human rights as per the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. However, most renewable energy companies do not currently have in place basic human rights policies and processes, which can help avoid or mitigate abuses and de-risk investment...Investors can influence renewable energy companies to do better, using the power of their investment to ask critical questions and push companies to think about these issues before abuses occur. Without respect for human rights through due diligence and adherence to international norms, renewable energy companies not only fall short of moral responsibilities but may also face complications including negative press coverage, project suspension, delays, and litigation that can also set back the transition to low-carbon economies.

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