Can green investment change the world? | DW Documentary

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From DW Documentary.

A new generation of investors wants to force businesses to become environmentally-friendly. Even climate conservationists know that money talks, but can green investments really save the world?

Green investment rewards companies that use sustainable production practices and protect the environment. At the same time, companies that pollute or contribute to global warming are deprived of funds. The strategy converts the once secondary issue of the environment into hard, cold cash.

Antonis Schwarz is 30 years old — and an investor, philanthropist, and activist. His slogan is "cash against climate change." Schwarz, like many other wealthy millennials, sees climate change as the key variable when it comes to investing money. These people intentionally put their cash into companies and projects that protect the environment.

Schwarz believes that those who are well-off have a special responsibility to follow this strategy. He says, "When you are able to change something and you don’t, you’re complicit. We all have to become fully involved, so we can prevent a climate disaster."

This philosophy can be summed up with the following question: "What’s the point of having loads of money if it becomes worthless because you’re living on a planet that’s becoming increasingly chaotic?"

Institutional investors have more money at their disposal than wealthy private individuals do. Their approach is also changing — and not out of pure idealism. Extreme weather events caused by climate change, for example, are bad for business. They can force corporations to write off billions in damages.

This documentary goes behind the scenes to take a closer look at the financial markets. How well does "impact investing" work? Can investors really move large, powerful corporations to change their strategies? Politicians have so far failed to do precisely that.

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