Money Talks: The backlash against ESG

One of the hottest areas of investing in recent years has been ESG: using environmental, social, and governance metrics as ways to assess potential investments. But the idea that you can make profits with purpose has recently come under pressure. Elon Musk has called ESG a scam; German police have just launched “greenwashing” raids; and insiders are spilling the beans. For something with hints of a moral crusade, ESG is in danger of turning into an unholy mess

On this week’s episode, hosts Alice Fulwood, Soumaya Keynes and Mike Bird investigate the problems plaguing ESG, and ask if the industry can survive. Blackrock’s former co-Chief Sustainability Officer Tariq Fancy explains why he decided the industry wasn’t fit for purpose. Lisa Woll, CEO of US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment, argues that the private sector has an important role to play alongside government policy. And Henry Tricks, the author of our special report on ESG, explains why he thinks the industry should focus solely on reducing emissions - and jettison the S and G. 

Sign up for our new weekly newsletter dissecting the big themes in markets, business and the economy at 

For full access to print, digital and audio editions, subscribe to The Economist at

Hosted on Acast. See for more information.