Environmentally sustainable investments
by Wallace Lou on October 30, 2017 - 1:37pm
Green investments refer to investments in activities that are considered good for the environment like projects committed to conservation of resources, production, and development of alternative energies, clean air and water. They fall in the category of socially responsible investing (SRI), but are more focused on environment. There are three big sectors: renewable energy, eco-living, and green buildings.
For the sector of renewable energy, development of solar panels, wind turbines, hybrid cars, biofuels, geothermal energy and hydroelectricity are all projects dedicated to reduce fossil fuel use and energy consumption. For eco-living, we can commit to organic farming and more green pesticides. As for the green buildings, we can use green materials such as bamboo, recycled plastic and rammed earth, use more energy-efficient glass and develop better insulation.
In Canada, for instance, Ontario is committed to investing $325 million in projects such as helping homeowners use less energy (changing furnaces and water heaters for more efficient ones, and upgrading insulation for example), building 500 electric vehicle charging station and social housing development such as building eco-friendly condos.
Furthermore, investing in the market of clean energy, although it can be risky since it is based on relatively new technologies, can also return up to 13% per year in some countries like U.K. considering tax breaks for investing in green market. Moreover, in the U.S. there are 88,000 jobs in the wind power sector and 209,000 workers in the solar energy sector which is expected to grow having 420,000 jobs by 2020, while the coal sector only employs 54,000 workers as of October 2017.