Investors urge Japan to strengthen climate targets

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Investors managing $37 trillion in assets urged Japan to slash the country’s carbon emissions, saying on Monday that a strong signal from Tokyo could help galvanize international climate action ahead of a U.N. summit in Glasgow in November.

Institutional investors, traditionally wary of singling out governments for criticism, are starting to subject policymakers to greater public pressure amid mounting fears over the risks that climate change poses to global markets.

While Britain and much of the European Union aim to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050, Japan is the only G7 nation still building new coal-fired power plants, drawing criticism from climate campaigners.

“​Japan’s approach to reducing emissions is being watched closely throughout Asia,” said Rebecca Mikula-Wright, director of the Asia Investor Group on Climate Change, one of various investor coalitions to sign an open later to Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe.