Green energy companies outperformed fossil-fuel companies by almost three times over a 10-year period based on simulated returns, according to a joint report released Monday from As You Sow and Corporate Knights.
The Carbon Clean 200 — an index of the 200 largest publicly traded companies worldwide ranked by their total clean energy revenue — returned an annualized 21.82%, according to a statement about the report, “Carbon Clean 200: Investing in a Clean Energy Future.” This compares with the 7.84% annualized return of the Carbon Underground 200, an index of the 100 largest publicly traded oil and gas companies and the 100 largest publicly traded coal companies, both sets based on their potential carbon dioxide emissions and their reserves.
The “outstanding performance of this list shows that the notion that investors must sacrifice returns when investing in clean energy is outdated,” Toby Heaps, CEO of Corporate Knights and co-author of the report, said in the statement. “Many clean energy investments are profitable now, and we anticipate that over the long term their appeal will only go up as technologies improve and more investors move away from underperforming fossil-fuel companies.”
To be eligible for the clean index, “a company must have a market capitalization greater than $1 billion (as of the end of the second quarter) and earn more than 10% of total revenues from clean energy sources,” the statement said.
Companies from China or Hong Kong “make up 36.5% of the Clean 200,” the report said.
As You Sow is an organization that ”promotes environmental and social corporate responsibility through shareholder advocacy,” according to the statement. Corporate Knights is a publishing and research group whose focus includes promoting better corporate environmental stewardship.
Mr. Heaps and Taraneh Arhamsadr, As You Sow spokeswoman, couldn’t be reached for comment.
The report is available here.