2020 annual report on responsible investment

Winter 2020

We recently published our 2020 Annual Report on Responsible Investment.

Responsible investment (RI) represents 50.6% of Canada's investment industrynote1. Through this article, we want to help you expand your RI knowledge and, in turn, grow your business.

2020 Annual Report on Responsible Investment (PDF, 2,9 ko)

From the linear economy to the circular economy

Our economy is based on a linear model of production and consumption. This model has now reached its limit:

Linear economic model

The extraction of non-renewable resources is becoming increasingly difficult, onerous and damaging to the environment. Currently, only 19% of residual materials are recycled or composted worldwidenote2. Therefore, it’s not surprising that 85% of Canadians say they are concerned about waste managementnote3.

Circular economic model

To achieve a sustainable balance, the world’s economy must shift to a circular model that fosters lower resource extraction, optimized resource use, and the reuse, reconditioning and recycling of consumed products.

Companies that are part of the solution

Many of the companies included in SocieTerra RI funds are working on their own solutions to these challenges. For example, some of them are developing circular production processes (ecodesign), while others are recycling or reclaiming waste materials.

Ecodesign and circular design

Company: Lenzing

Lenzing manufactures textile products from cellulose derived from trees.

In addition to using less water and chemical additives compared to cotton production, Lenzing’s closed-loop production process does not generate waste. The company uses 100% of its harvested timber. A portion of the production residue is biorefined and used by the agri-food industry, while the rest is used as an energy source for Lenzing’s facilities. Finally, its fibres are certified as fully compostable.

This company is part of:

Desjardins SocieTerra Cleantech Fund


Recycling

Company: Apple

Apple issues green bonds to finance sustainable development projects.

It is currently testing a new aluminum alloy made of 100% recycled materials, as manufacturing the aluminum used in its products is one of the biggest contributors to Apple’s carbon footprint. Aluminum can be recycled almost indefinitely while using up to 95% less energy than it takes to extract itnote 4. The company is also developing a robot called Daisy that can disassemble up to 200 iPhones per hour and recover parts and materials that conventional recyclers cannot process.

This company is part of:

Desjardins SocieTerra Environmental Bond Fund


Recycling and reclamation

Company: Trex

Trex manufactures and distributes construction materials for composite wood decks.

The company uses recycled wood fibre and plastic waste (bags and plastic wrap) and is one of the largest plastic recyclers in the United States. Sustainability is an integral part of the company’s business model. Trex aims to reduce resource use while capitalizing on the financial advantages of its low input costs.

This company is part of:

Desjardins SocieTerra American Equity Fund


Reclamation

Company: Waste Connections

Waste Connections specializes in the collection and treatment of waste and recyclable materials in Canada and the United States.

The company develops technologies for capturing gas from landfills. Thanks to these technologies, a single site can prevent the emission of 1.2 million tonnes of carbon dioxide over 10 years.

This company is part of:

Desjardins SocieTerra Canadian Equity Fund


  1. 1. Source: 2018 Canadian Responsible Investment Trends Report – Responsible Investment Association (October 2018)
  2. 2. Globally, approximately 37% of waste goes to landfills, 33% goes to open dumps, 19% is recycled or composted and 11% is incinerated.
  3. 3. Source: SOM/Desjardins survey on RI, 2018
  4. 4. Source: https://ceal-aluquebec.com/recyclage-aluminium/- External link. This link will open in a new window.

This information should not be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell the securities, products or services referred to or as the sole basis for an investment decision.

Desjardins Funds are not guaranteed, their value fluctuates frequently, and their past performance is not indicative of their future returns. Commissions, trailing commissions, management fees and expenses may be associated with mutual fund investments. Please read the prospectus before investing. Desjardins Funds are offered by registered dealers.