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American International Group Inc. said Wednesday it halved its total carbon emissions in 2020, as it reduced its office footprint and COVID-19 prompted travel restrictions and the shift to work from home.
In its inaugural environmental, social and governance report released Wednesday, AIG said its electricity emissions fell by 24% in 2020 as it reduced its real estate footprint by 11% through consolidation and lease terminations.
Notable real estate reductions included all four of its facilities in India, comprising 233,969 square feet; two facilities in the Philippines, totaling 117,840 square feet; and two facilities in Malaysia, comprising 103,158 square feet.
AIG also reported a 97% drop in carbon emissions from business travel in 2020 due to the shift to work from home.
AIG’s Scope 3 emissions, which include only emissions from business air travel, fell from 44,695 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2019 to 1,394 metric tons in 2020, according to the report.
Scope 1 emissions, which include direct emissions from fuel usage in AIG’s business operations, fell by 64% in 2020.
A clearer picture of its long-term progress towards reducing its carbon footprint should emerge in 2021, outside of pandemic disruptions, AIG said in the report.
Meanwhile, renewables business written by AIG increased by 20% to more than $361 million between 2018 and 2020, while its coal portfolio decreased by 14.1% in the same period to $85.9 million, according to the report.
As of fiscal year 2020, AIG’s portfolio of coal-related insurance business accounts for far less than 1% of its total $24.9 billion in-force general insurance portfolio, the report said.
Business opportunities that are linked to ESG-sensitive businesses may undergo further risk assessment and approval from relevant business unit leadership, depending on their degree of reputational risk, AIG said in the report.
In addition, AIG Trade Finance requires that all counterparties from the diamond industry are part of the effort to remove conflict diamonds from the global supply chain.
The insurer has committed to achieving net-zero emissions for its own operations by 2050.
Legal & General Investment Management, Britain’s biggest asset manager recently dropped AIG and three other companies from a number of its funds over “insufficient” response to the challenge of climate change.
A Willis Towers Watson PLC survey has found 78% of employers are planning to change the way they use environmental, social and governance measures in their executive incentive strategies, Employee Benefits report. According to the study, global events such as the COVID-19 pandemic, economic uncertainty, and social and racial justice, are causing employers to speed up changes to their ESG priorities.