Earth Equity Advisors and other Institutional Investors Call on Duke Energy to Mitigate Coal Ash Risks

Sustainable & Responsible Investing Continues to Grow at Remarkable Pace

 

US SIF, the Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment published their biennial 2018 Responsible and Impact Investing Trends today. As we have been expecting, the amount of investments categorized as being sustainable and responsible has grown considerably since the last report back in 2016. Earth Equity Advisors has been a member of US SIF for over fourteen years.

Sustainable and responsible investing in the US has grown to $12 trillion from $8.7 trillion in 2016. That’s a 38% increase and now accounts for just over ¼ of all investments under professional management in the US.

Earth Equity advisors has seen asset growth of 60% plus over the last two years. “It’s exciting to see our industry to continue to grow at this rapid pace and even more exciting to see Earth Equity Advisors lead the way,” said Earth Equity Advisors’ CEO & Director of Investments, Peter Krull.

The report also catalogs the more than 700 shareholder resolutions filed relating to environmental, social and governance issues during the 2018 proxy season. “Shareholder advocacy continues to be a good strategy to push companies to be better and truly helps Earth Equity to fulfill our mission to empower our clients to be changemakers,” Earth Equity Advisors’ Partner & COO, Neill Yelverton said. The top issues raised were proxy access, corporate political activity, climate change and labor and equal employment opportunity.

 

For more information on the US SIF report, visit the organization’s website for an executive summary of the report.

 

Speaker Series Recap: Diversity & Inclusion Takeaways

Earth Equity Advisors to sponsor photo+sphere event

Earth Equity Advisors is proud to be a sponsor of the photo+sphere event coming to Asheville November 7-11, 2018. photo+sphere explores the environment through photography and photo media and includes nationally known speakers and panelists, exhibitions, films and performances at venues throughout Asheville.

Earth Equity Advisors’ CEO & Director of Investments, Peter Krull is an avid photographer, “I’m excited to be a part of this unique event, showcasing the intersection of photography, humans and the environment. I’m looking forward to enjoying the events.” The firm publishes an annual calendar for clients and friends featuring Krull’s photography.

“I believe it’s important to share our view of the world and photography is a great vehicle to do so. From nature to people and culture, I love seeing the world through the eye of a photographer,” Krull said.

Earth Equity regularly sponsors local events with a focus on social issues, sustainability or the environment. Visit www.earthequityadvisors for more information.

A Conversation with Nzinga Shaw, Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer for the Atlanta Hawks

Inclusion & the Next Economy: A Solutions Based Conversation

Earth Equity Advisors Named Best for the World: Changemaker

More good news from our BCorps community! Earth Equity Advisor has been recognized for doing the most to improve our impact on the world in the global B Corporation community with a spot on the Best for the World: Changemakers list! As 1 of just 203 businesses that were chosen, we’re in great company!The 203 companies on the Best For The World: Changemakers list come from 66 different industries and 16 countries.

“With the rise of anger at a system that feels rigged, people are hungry for companies like Earth Equity Advisors, who are changing the system by building businesses that seek to create the greatest positive impact,” says Jay Coen Gilbert, co-founder of B Lab. “Best for the World is the only list of businesses that uses comprehensive, comparable, third-party-validated data about a company’s social and environmental performance. As consumers, talent and investors increasingly demand transparent, values-aligned businesses to buy from, work at and invest in, companies will need to not just be the best in the world, but the best for the world. And not just to be nice, but to be the most successful.”

Read more about the Changemaker award here.

A Week at Camp Girl Boss

Leesa and I both feel lucky that we were able to be a part of Camp Girl Boss earlier in July. Camp Girl Boss was an inaugural program created by Asheville entrepreneur and leader Emily Breedlove.  It was a week-long day camp held at UNCA that empowered girls to find their voices, celebrate the power of their ideas, and step boldly in the direction of what is possible as they created their own companies. Earth Equity Advisors chose to sponsor one of the young women with a scholarship, since a program like this is directly aligned with our values.

As a mentor, Leesa supported one of the young girls as she figured out her company, including mission, name, product lines, pricing strategies, and target market.  The concept of a triple bottom line philosophy (people, planet, profit) resonated with her, illustrated by her plan to donate 50% of any company profits to a local non-profit. “It was such an honor to help this creative young woman take her concept for a company and create a viable start-up.  The energy, creativity, passion and excitement of this group made me hopeful for the future when they’re in charge!”

I worked with the girls to create logos for their website. It was a whirlwind of a day, with 30 minutes to sit down, brainstorm and create! I was impressed with each girl’s ability to articulate their vision and communicate what they wanted for their brand.

At the graduation ceremony at the end of the week we were able to see the participants’ visions come together. Each girl had created a website that incorporated their logo, their business services and a mission statement. Beyond that, they had a 60 second elevator pitch, which is no easy feat to perfect and to give in front of hundreds of people. I was blown away. Their keynote speaker at the graduation was former Asheville Mayor, Terry Bellamy. Bellamy spoke on the importance of providing young women with the tools to overcome challenges they may face as entrepreneurs – to continue to make bold decisions and push for their success.

Congratulations to the young women who graduated from Camp Girl Boss ’18. We can’t wait to see what 2019 brings!

A Conversation About Alzheimer’s and Money

Any health diagnosis is scary, however an Alzheimer’s diagnosis for a loved one strikes fear and anxiety, and throws one into uncharted waters.  The person may have minor symptoms at the beginning, however medical professionals begin to paint the picture for the future of the “long goodbye”.

Several of my clients are going through this challenging chapter of life, as they navigate the mental decline of their spouse, and have to figure out how to handle life activities, including money matters.  There is a lot of information available about the necessity for legal and financial protections and the ten steps provided by the Alzheimer’s Association in this booklet provide a great roadmap:

  1. Discuss finances and future care wishes soon after a diagnosis.
  2. Organize and review important documents.
  3. Seek legal help from well-qualified financial and legal advisors.
  4. Estimate possible costs for the entire disease process.
  5. Look at all of your insurance options.
  6. Find out which government programs you are eligible for.
  7. Learn about income tax breaks for which you may qualify.
  8. Explore financial support you can personally provide.
  9. Take advantage of low-cost and free community services.
  10. Consider how personal property and work-related benefits can become a source of income.

As financial advisors, we can help you navigate several things, from identifying potential financial resources to analyzing your investment portfolio with long-term care needs in mind. We can also help facilitate efforts with an estate attorney to be sure appropriate documents are in place.

However, beyond the practical aspects of legal documents, financial planning and protection of resources, there is the day to day shift in your relationship with this person that you have lived with and loved perhaps for decades.  One of my clients has started writing a book about her experience, and talks about the strange experience of your spouse still being alive, yet feeling huge loss.

“There are no sympathy cards, maybe no neighbors bringing over mac and cheese, perhaps no clergy person offering care and concern.  But you are grieving.  Even with the reality that your husband or wife is not going to get better and that everything will not go back to being as it was, there is a way to cope, and there is a way of hope.  There is a way to live life in the now, to see the beauty of life in the midst of the chaos and to give thanks for the little things.”

As I observe the strength, creativity, and compassion of the dedicated caregivers that look after Alzheimer patients (spouses, children, friends, medical professionals) it is a great reminder of the tenacity of love that knows no bounds.  Perhaps you know someone going through this type of experience, and you can provide some extra support, or just a kind word of encouragement.


June is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month – If you need to have a conversation with your financial advisor about Alzheimer’s or any other health matter, we’re here

Leesa also used these first hand accounts as a guide: Managing Your Parents’ MoneyMom, Money and Alzheimer’s. 


EARTH EQUITY ADVISORS IS A REGISTERED INVESTMENT ADVISER. INFORMATION PRESENTED IS FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT INTEND TO MAKE AN OFFER OR SOLICITATION FOR THE SALE OR PURCHASE OF ANY SPECIFIC SECURITIES, INVESTMENTS, OR INVESTMENT STRATEGIES. INVESTMENTS INVOLVE RISK AND UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED, ARE NOT GUARANTEED. BE SURE TO FIRST CONSULT WITH A QUALIFIED FINANCIAL ADVISER AND/OR TAX PROFESSIONAL BEFORE IMPLEMENTING ANY STRATEGY DISCUSSED HEREIN.

Gender Lens Investing: Earth Equity Advisors Offering the Social Index Portfolio

Earth Equity Advisors is now offering a unique investment portfolio that has been managed by Green Alpha Advisors, LLCsince 2015, and is constructed using powerful leadership diversity and sustainability lenses. Green Alpha’s Next Economy Social Index utilizes unique gender & social inclusion criteria based on the following real-world evidence and academic research:

  • Diverse teams perform at higher levels than homogenous ones because they are more creative. A wider variety of input from team members enables a team to better identify problems and develop solutions.
  • Non-homogenous teams tend to outperform because they evaluate more facts and process those facts carefully.
  • Research demonstrates that companies with more women are more likely to introduce radical new innovationsinto the market over a two-year period.
  • Diverse teams are more likely to achieve both short and long-term goals than homogenous teams.

The companies that make up the Next Economy Social Index are actively researched by Green Alpha, and are chosen from the list of sustainable, Next Economy Index companies (to learn more about Green Alpha’s Next Economy Investment Philosophy, visit their website). The companies with strong female representation on the board or in a leadership position are added to the Social Index, and additional portfolio weight is given to companies where women hold positions of significant authority, women have especially strong representation in leadership and/or corporate policies are socially inclusive.

“Gender diversity is clearly just one material aspect of any given team’s composition, but an important one that clients are asking about. Clearly, investors are recognizing the value of diversity, too,” said Betsy Moszeter, Investment Committee member and COO of Green Alpha Advisors. “Done correctly, a diversity-centric portfolio can offer investors the opportunity to earn higher return-on-equity, benefit society and reward companies that recognize the top and bottom-line impacts of significant female representation in leadership and on their board of directors.”

“As always, we continue to believe that innovation—especially risk-mitigating innovation—is a clear long-term path to competitive returns,” said Garvin Jabusch, Green Alpha’s Chief Investment Officer. “Since diverse teams have repeatedly proven to be superior innovators, it makes clear sense for us at Green Alpha to add this approach to our strategies.”

We have the utmost respect for the Green Alpha team’s curiosity and dedication to research and innovation. Schedule an appointment or give us a call to learn more about investing in the Social Index.


Green Alpha is a registered trademark of Green Alpha Advisors, LLC. Green Alpha also owns the trademark to “Next Economy.”


EARTH EQUITY ADVISORS IS A REGISTERED INVESTMENT ADVISER. INFORMATION PRESENTED IS FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT INTEND TO MAKE AN OFFER OR SOLICITATION FOR THE SALE OR PURCHASE OF ANY SPECIFIC SECURITIES, INVESTMENTS, OR INVESTMENT STRATEGIES. INVESTMENTS INVOLVE RISK AND UNLESS OTHERWISE STATED, ARE NOT GUARANTEED. BE SURE TO FIRST CONSULT WITH A QUALIFIED FINANCIAL ADVISER AND/OR TAX PROFESSIONAL BEFORE IMPLEMENTING ANY STRATEGY DISCUSSED HEREIN.