Responding to the publication today of EDF’s Just Transition strategy, Carlota Garcia-Manas, Head of Engagement at Royal London Asset Management (RLAM) said:
“EDF is now the fourth energy utility company to respond to our (1) call to publish a Just Transition strategy, ahead of the COP26 summit (2).
“It is vital that the summit focuses on maintaining support for overcoming poverty in emerging markets during the energy transition. EDF’s strategy shows that this is possible, through the social benefits of their projects in the developing world; including off grid projects in rural areas in Africa, the installation of a hydropower plant in Laos which has reduced child mortality (3) and a doubling in house revenues in the Nakai area, where the Nam Theun 2 dam was built.
“Since 1995, EDF has closed 30 coal-fired plants and redeployed its employees by working closely with its trade unions. In the UK, EDF’s West Burton A coal plant is set to close in 2022, the second last remaining coal plant.
“The strategy calls for the European Union to ensure the Emission Trading Scheme is revised to support a fair transition and mitigate the impacts of higher carbon prices on consumers.
“EDF’s strategy sets the precedence of our engagement expectations, ensuring Just Transition leaves nobody behind. The strategy aims to ensure fairness towards workers, communities, supply chains and customers as well as protecting nature for the benefit of future generations.”
Notes to Editors:
(1) RLAM and Friends Provident engaged with the top seven utilities companies (Centrica, E.ON, EDF, National Grid, RWE, SSE and Scottish Power) and asked for formal commitments to be put in place by November 2021. Prompted by RLAM’s and Friends Provident’s engagement, SSE were the first to announce a formal Just Transition strategy in October 2020. RLAM and Friends Provident requested the other leading companies in the sector to also develop strategies that address their expectations ahead of the UNFCCC COP26 meeting in November 2021.
(2) The COP26 summit will bring parties together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.
(3) Taken from EDF’s Just Transition document, pg 18 Impact of Actions - Just Transition (edf.fr).
The views expressed are those of the author at the date of publication unless otherwise indicated, which are subject to change, and is not investment advice.