Congressman Andy Levin, a Democrat representing Michigan’s 9th Congressional District, recently introduced two new pieces of legislation aimed at increasing transparency around the environmental impact of financial investments. Levin says the goal of the newly introduced Sustainable Investment Policy Act is to allow people greater control over things like retirement benefits.
“These two bills say that fiduciaries and investment plan managers have to give you information about ESGs [environmental, social and governance factors].” — Rep. Andy Levin
Levin says that financial investments should be able to reflect an individual’s social and political values. “If we care about human rights, if we care about the environment, if we care about climate change, if we care about workers here in the United States… These two bills say that fiduciaries and investment plan managers have to give you information about ESGs [environmental, social and governance factors],” explains Levin.
He adds that under this legislation, investment managers would not only have to provide information but also have ESG-oriented financial portfolios available for those who want to direct their money toward sustainable investments.
Green corporate investing is growing rapidly growing financial sector. Levin says it’s “taken off incredibly fast, it grew crazily from 2018 to 2019, and the returns people are getting in sustainable investing so far are better than the market as a whole.” According to the investment research source Morningstar, ESG investments are generally outperforming conventional offerings.
Levin says that he hopes this legislation could help the millions of American workers who don’t have enough savings and says that he is excited about the potential this could have in encouraging more young people to start investing their dollars to help with their finances later in life.