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Mark Carney to head ESG investing at Brookfield Asset Management

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“The question particularly for asset owners, pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and others is: How are you oriented? Are you on the right side, or the wrong side, of history?” Carney said in an interview.

Over the past three decades, Brookfield has built one of the world’s largest pure-play renewable energy businesses. It now has nearly 20,000 megawatts in operation and another 18,000 megawatts in development globally. It has other businesses, such as water treatment facilities in Brazil, that could fit with the new funds, Flatt said.

“The discipline around the impact these investments will have on climate and the portfolio is going to become a mainstream skill, just like managing credit risk and duration,” Carney said. “The platform that can do that, and is out in front, is going to be more attractive for allocation than one that doesn’t.”

Political Speculation

The growth in Brookfield’s renewable energy business has come alongside a massive expansion of its portfolio. Since 2012, Brookfield’s assets have grown to about US$550 billion from $150 billion, trailing only Blackstone Group Inc. among alternative asset managers.

Speculation about Carney’s next move went into overdrive earlier this month after Bloomberg reported that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau enlisted him for advice on an economic plan to pull the country out of recession. That led to talk that he might even enter the government as finance minister, but last week Trudeau gave that job to Chrystia Freeland, his deputy prime minister.

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