Acting on climate solvency

We are a group of actuaries and others who are working towards a coherent understanding of the issues around carbon emissions and offsets by considering them in an actuarial context.

Actuarial thinking around the race to net zero and the interaction between carbon offsetting and carbon markets could contribute to ensuring that organisations’ pledges are meaningful and effective. The time value of carbon has parallels to, but is different from, the time value of money, and there is currently no widespread effective approach to it. Looking at the achievement of net zero as the need to balance streams of variable flows of carbon has a clear affinity with the need to balance streams of variable cash flows which forms the basis of much actuarial work, and an actuarial approach, recognising the variability and uncertainties involved, is likely to produce new insights. In particular, it would support the realisation that net zero is a continuous process, rather than a one-off state to be achieved. Moreover, the whole apparatus of carbon credits clearly has many inherent risks and uncertainties that are similar to those faced in the financial world and that are likely to be susceptible to similar analyses and management techniques.

The Team

Louise Pryor

Louise Pryor has had a varied career as an actuary, academic, and software developer. She has practised as an independent consultant in the areas of software risk and sustainability and has worked on financial modelling for social security and pensions reform in a number of emerging economies. She currently focuses on sustainability and co-chairs the Actuaries Carbon Collaboration. Louise is President of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries, Chair of the London Climate Change Partnership and a non-executive director of the Ecology Building Society.

Roelof Coertze

Roelof Coertze is a deeply experienced actuary who is passionate about actuaries positively impacting the planet and society. He is co-chair with the current IFOA president of the Actuaries Carbon Collaboration and contributed to a number of IFOA working parties, including risk management, TCFD and on climate risk topics. He is actively involved in setting targets for carbon reduction and responsible investment, performing climate scenario testing and embedding ESG and TCFD reporting, both internally and externally. He is also a father and wants to help leave the planet in good shape for his off spring.

Gowri Suresh Babu

Gowri Suresh Babu is a qualified actuary with nearly 10 years’ financial experience including consulting on retirement benefits, investments, governance and financial wellbeing. She has a deep appreciation and understanding of the differences between markets around the world having worked in the UK, Sweden and now in China, helping a range of corporate clients. Since majoring in natural sciences at a graduate level, Gowri is passionate about making a good impression on our environment and has a keen interest in the role of actuaries in tackling climate change.

Mike Clark

Mike runs a responsible investment advisory firm, Ario Advisory. He works across the investment sector with asset owners, investment managers, policymakers, regulators, investment consultants and NGOs. Much of his work is concerned with the financial risks of climate change. Among his roles, he represents IFoA on the Advisory Council at the Oxford Smith School. He has recently left the Brunel (LGPS) board where he was a NED (chairing Remco and previously Audit & Risk). He is a member of the Oxford Diocese Investment Committee. He was Specialist Adviser to the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee for their 2018 Green Finance inquiry.

Tim den Dekker

Tim den Dekker is an architect and previously worked as an actuary. He is an associate at the architecture practice Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios where he specialises in low carbon and circular economy design. Between his actuarial and architectural studies he helped develop the insurance risk management business of Oliver, Wyman & Company. He is on core research groups within LETI, a network of over 1000 built environment professionals that are working together to put London on the path to a zero carbon future, and co-authored Part Z, the construction industry’s proposal for regulating embodied carbon. Tim writes about urban decision-making at urbanstrategylab.com.

Dabo Guan

Professor Dabo Guan is a Distinguished Professor at Tsinghua University, China, and Chair of Climate Change Economics at the University College London, UK. He is the Fellow of Academy of Social Sciences, UK. He specialises in environmental economics for international climate change mitigation, climate change adaptation, scenario analysis on environmental impacts, water resources accounting and management, input-output modelling and their applications in both developed and developing countries. He was a Lead Author for the IPCC AR5. He was the Highly Cited Researcher for 2018-2020, top thousand climate academics (rank 389 in 2020). He has authored over 200+ publications, including 60+ articles published Nature, Nature Research Journals, and PNAS. He received the PNAS Cozzarelli Prize 2014, the Leontief Prize 3 times and the Philip Leverhulme Prize. His paper about climate change impact on beer consumption received the 2018 Altimetric Top 100 award.

Izaak Jephson

Izaak Jephson is a part-qualified actuary working in pensions and data analytics. He works primarily as a consultant, advising on benefits, funding, governance and sustainability for pension scheme trustees. Izaak also works on the development of interactive dashboards for analysing and reporting carbon emissions.

He hopes that by transforming the way we think about and interact with our environment we can create a sustainable and ethical future.

Paul Pritchard

Paul has wide experience in corporate sustainability with a focus on financial services.  While at RSA Insurance Group he was Group Environmental Adviser and also lead the operational risk function. He now works with Iken Associates, where he focuses on the integration of sustainability into financial services. He authored the BSI/BEIS Sustainable Finance Framework Guide (PAS7340) and joint authored a guide to TCFD. He has served as Vice Chairman of IEMA and as a Fellow at the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).

Rathi Ravi

Rathi Ravi is a part qualified actuary and is an ESG Data Specialist, working with investment teams and data vendors to streamline ESG integration and meet new requirements. She works with technologists to convert business requirements into innovative technology solutions, particularly for private assets where a data strategy remains elusive. Rathi’s interest in sustainability stems from her focus on DE&I. She has founded and chaired gender networks at Prudential plc and M&G plc and as recognition of these efforts, has received the first M&G plc Diversity Network Member of the Year Award in 2020.     

Simon Sturgis

Simon Sturgis AADip RIBA is an environmental specialist focusing on embodied carbon in the built environment. He has written official Policy on Embodied and Whole Life Carbon for the RICS, the RIBA and the GLA’s new London Plan. He is an advisor to government departments, UKGBC, EU Commission, the BCO, CIC, and the RIBA Stirling Prize. His book ‘Targeting Zero – Embodied and Whole Life carbon explained” is a standard work on the subject. He also advises commercial clients eg: British Land, Schroders, and Google. He has spoken at many international conferences, including COP 24. Simon was recently appointed Special Advisor to the Environmental Audit Select Committee.