One in Three Businesses are Tackling Climate Change

June 3, 2022

More and more New Zealand businesses are bucking the trend and tackling climate change.

According to an annual survey* by Stats NZ, in the past two years, 35% of businesses invested in measures to reduce their carbon footprint or adapt to the potential impacts of climate change. On the other hand, little over half of the respondents said that they hadn’t made any climate change-related investments since 2020.

Like to learn more? Read on for some key findings.

The most common climate change-related actions

Amongst the most common steps that New Zealand businesses took were improving the efficiency of buildings (22%), and investing in new software or digital technology (25%). Staff training (23%) and lower-emission plants or equipment (20%) were also common.

What businesses are planning to do in the next five years

Last year, when the survey was conducted, 45% of businesses surveyed said they planned to take actions against climate change in the next five years, including reducing waste (33%), switching to more sustainable suppliers (20%), and reducing the potential impacts of climate change on the business (19%). Ten per cent also planned to cut their greenhouse gas emissions.

Top drivers and barriers to change

Interestingly, cost was the main factor for not taking action (20%). Other common reasons provided were lack of management resources, lack of viable technologies, or having other priorities. Many business owners also felt that they didn’t have enough information to support their decision-making.

As for the most common reasons for taking action, businesses mentioned demand from management, board or employees, demand from customers, and public opinion. And with more and more New Zealander consumers and investors getting behind the sustainability agenda, even more businesses may soon look to ‘go green’.

Is ethical investing important to you?

According to a recent survey by the Responsible Investment Association Australasia (RIAA), 73% of Kiwis want their funds to be invested ethically, and 62% think it’s important that their investment makes a positive difference to the world.

Sound like you? Get in touch. As financial advisers, we can help you find a KiwiSaver or investment funds that align with your values and goals.

*Methodology: For the 2021 business operations survey, Stats NZ surveyed over 7,000 New Zealand-based businesses with six or more employees.

Disclaimer: Please note that the content provided in this article is intended as an overview and as general information only. While care is taken to ensure accuracy and reliability, the information provided is subject to continuous change and may not reflect current developments or address your situation. Before making any decisions based on the information provided in this article, please use your discretion and seek independent guidance.