April 12, 2023
2022’s environmental and social challenges brought about ambitious work and new solutions. The need for climate action intensified, and companies are responding with improved reporting, better jobs, and new decarbonization efforts. Deforestation continues to threaten biodiversity, but the global community is coming together to end nature loss this decade. And while war and persecution persist, governments and companies are stepping in to defend human rights.
Domini’s new report underscores how our impact investment standards, in-house research, and corporate engagement helped to address some of 2022’s most pressing issues—across the environment, human dignity, racial equity, gender, and more.
“Encouraging companies to deepen their sustainability efforts was a focus of our work in 2022,” said Domini CEO Carole Laible. “We understand finance’s role in helping drive progress. We leveraged it to support the climate transition, safeguard nature, and promote equity.”
Here are some highlights from Domini’s work and impact in 2022:
Reduced carbon intensity
All Domini equity funds continued to be less carbon intensive than their respective benchmarks. We also saw a stronger commitment of companies held in each of the funds to setting science-based targets.
- The Domini Impact Equity Fund’s portfolio was 64% less carbon intensive than its benchmark in 2022. 53% of our portfolio companies have set or committed to set science-based targets to reduce emissions.
- We also worked with banks on net-zero targets, encouraging measurement and goal setting on financed emissions and, when relevant, the phase-out of the most polluting sectors.
Preserving forests and nature
We have a long-term initiative to protect and preserve forests. It’s important that we work towards ending deforestation this decade.
- We dialogued directly with several companies—communicating investor expectations around deforestation policy commitments, demonstrating how supply chains can be transformed, and helping ensure respect for human rights where deforestation may impact communities or rightsholders.
- We took part in key conversations at the United Nations’ COP15 conference on biodiversity and Climate Week NYC 2022, helping guide leaders towards a new international biodiversity framework.
Lifting up climate justice
Transitioning to a lower-carbon economy needs to be an equitable, holistic process that doesn’t leave anyone behind.
- Our standards helped us identify and invest in companies that are seeking and listening to input from their workers as part of efforts to make their business operations more sustainable.
- We also identified companies that provide workers with strong labor protections and fair wages—or are retaining or hiring workers from carbon-intensive roles, who bring valuable expertise to the low-carbon transition.
Direct dialogue with companies
Investors have a powerful voice. Direct dialogue, collaboration, and partnerships play a crucial role in improving corporate governance and encouraging stronger policies.
- Our advocacy with companies, regulators, and other decision makers totaled to 382 engagements. Nearly half of these incorporated a racial justice lens, aiming to help create change at the intersection of race and other environmental and social issues.
- Many companies—even those not domiciled in Russia—may be impacted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine through supply chains, workers, and direct operations. We engaged with companies to conduct enhanced human rights due diligence as they evaluate the appropriate way forward.
- We encouraged supermarket chains to join the Milk with Dignity program and the Fair Food Program, which aim to ensure concrete protections for farmers, farmworkers, and other at-risk workers in the supply chain.
Read the report here: https://domini.com/2022impactreport