Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction 2013
From Shared Risk to Shared Value: the Business Case for Disaster Risk Reduction

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198 Part III - Chapter 12
ple, associated with earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions and landslides.
A changing approach to investment is also taking root in some large institutional investors. For example, the Government Employees Pension Fund of South Africa has recognized that the information available and used in each stage of the investment chain is asymmetric. This means that providers of investment opportunity know more than investors and control the information of those whose money they manage (IISD et al., 2012). In addition, regulation is encouraging long-term investors, such as large pension funds, to invest in securities with low risk to ensure liquidity and stability of their portfolios. The South African pension fund is seeking to diversify its portfolio by investing in longer-term development projects across the country (Ibid.).
One of the largest sovereign wealth funds, the Norwegian Pension Fund Global, is another example. It passively invests in more than 8,000 companies worldwide and yet has established standards for environmental, social and governance issues to be taken into account in all of these. However, to quantify the benefits to these initiatives and to estimate the cost of externalized risks is not a trivial exercise, particularly when it comes to valuing natural capital. As a result, performance criteria for investment contracts and loans that take natural capital – and disaster risk considerations – into account have yet to be identified (Cambridge Programme for Sustainable Leadership 2011b). Recent initiatives are now addressing this gap (TEEB, 2010

TEEB (The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity). 2010.,Integrating the ecological and economic dimensions in biodiversity and ecosystem service valuation., In: Ecological and Economic Foundations, TEEB Document.. .
) though there is still a need to link the real costs of externalities such as environmental pollution, the destruction of natural capital or the cost of increased disaster risk.
While these changes still involve a minute proportion of the total value of global financial assets, they do indicate a change in direction. These changing values are now guiding both regulators concerned with reducing systemic risks as well as investors who want to protect their investments against such risks and at the same time avoid making invest-
ments that generate environmental and social costs.
The threat of falling equity prices or negative analyst ratings for businesses that do not manage or disclose their disaster risks may in time become a powerful incentive that rewards those businesses and governments, which more effectively manage those risks.
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