Green shares

G Magazine

Getting your fair shares

Money in nest

Credit: iStockphoto

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Green investment is booming. Market experts say that water shortages, waste issues and the symptoms of climate change will provide plenty of opportunity for investors to make money out of companies investing in wind, hydroelectric, geothermal and solar energy.

Certainly, the evidence suggests there has been massive growth in this area.

According to the Responsible Investment Association Australasia's 2007 'Benchmarking Survey', responsible investment in the areas of ethical managed funds, community finance, green loans and charity portfolios grew 43 per cent in 2006 to 2007.

In the three years from 2004 to 2007, managed responsible investment portfolios alone grew by 380 per cent.

The focus on environmental issue has driven much of this growth.

But how do you get into green shares? Or develop a green portfolio? And if it means doing your homework on companies, how exactly do you go about it?

As an aspiring green investor you can choose from one of two methods. The first is the do it yourself (DIY) approach. The second is the 'Yellow Pages approach': call in a financial advisor for all your needs.

Doing your homework

For anyone taking the DIY approach, the most important thing is research.

This means combing through company documents such as annual reports and letters to shareholders; usually these can be found on the company website.

Alternatively, you can go to bodies such as the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investment website or to the websites of individual fund managers.

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