ESG confusion: 19x new research on energy, mining, home offices, UN PRI, D&O, ESG ratings, greenwashing, shareholder and bondholder engagements, CEO pay, asset allocation, trading fee, private equity, cryptos
Political (social and ecological) research
Energy tax chaos: Carbon conundrum – How to Save Climate Change Policy from Government Failure by Philip Booth and Carlo Stagnaro from the Institute of Economic Affairs as of Jan. 19th, 2023 (#5): “In principle, environmental taxes and subsidies should reflect externalities. However, in practice, policy is chaotic with tax treatment reflecting the nature of the fuel, who consumes the fuel and for what purpose the fuel is used. … On average, oil products are taxed at €405 per tonne of oil equivalent in the UK and €334 in the EU27, as compared with €135 and €101 for natural gas and €112 and €84 for coal. This is despite the fact that coal, not oil, poses the largest environmental challenges as far as climate change is concerned. … Subsidies were higher for solar photovoltaics (€1,468 per tonne of oil equivalent in the UK and €2,019 in the EU27), followed by wind power (€961 and €743, respectively). Hydro power and bio-energies received, on average, much lower subsidies. … Subsidies to fossil fuels were generally intended to support consumption rather than production. On average, oil, natural gas and coal received €130, €61 and €86 per tonne of oil equivalent in subsidies in the UK and €320, €47 and €27 respectively in the EU27. … The net effect of taxes and subsidies leads to substantially greater net taxes on oil than on natural gas while coal is taxed the least. The level of net taxes on energy sources does not, in any way, relate to the externalities from the energy source” (Viii-X)
Social mining: Mining for Peace by Roland Hodler, Paul Schaudt, and Alberto Vesperoni as of Jan. 25th, 2023 (#9):“The energy transition increases the demand for minerals from ethnically diverse, conflict-prone developing countries. We study whether and where mining is possible in such countries without raising the risk of civil conflict. … A crucial insight is that new mining projects do not necessarily translate into more conflict but may pacify the country under the right conditions and the right policies“ (abstract). My comment: Ca. 1% of my investable ESG universe consists of mining stocks
Good home offices: Time Savings When Working from Home by Cevat Giray Aksoy, Jose Maria Barrero, Nicholas Bloom, Steven J. Davis, Mathias Dolls, and Pablo Zarate as of Jan. 17th, 2023 (#53): “We quantify the commute time savings associated with work from home, drawing on data for 27 countries. The average daily time savings when working from home is 72 minutes in our sample. … Workers allocate 40 percent of their time savings to their jobs and about 11 percent to caregiving activities. People living with children allocate more of their time savings to caregiving“ (abstract).
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