Trucost Gets Its Eco-Data Into More Investors' Hands

 Investors looking to use environmental impacts to inform their decisions can now see the carbon intensity of companies and hundreds of other measurements alongside financial data.

A partnership between investment data provider FactSet and environmental impact research firm Trucost will make the data Trucost has gathered on more than 4,000 companies available through the FactSet platform, expanding the number of people who can access such information.

In short, Trucost and FactSet are making it easier for investors to get their hands on environmental data and help them made decisions based on more than just purely financial facts.

The data from Trucost will allows customers of FactSet, which competes with the likes of Bloomberg and Thomson Reuters, to see the results of more than 700 environmental metrics related to company impacts, such as greenhouse gas emissions, carbon intensity and water intensity. In late 2010, FactSet had nearly 43,000 users.

"If you're interested in having an environmental angle or sustainability angle to your portfolio, this means you now have rigorous criteria you can use accordingly," said Cary Krosinsky, vice president for Trucost.

He said that while European and Australian investors have been showing the most interest in getting a hold of environmental impact data, there is niche, but growing, interest from groups in the U.S.

The California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) is the first to use Trucost's data through FactSet. CalSTRS, the second largest public pension fund in the country, announced plans earlier this year to get more outside fund managers to take environmental and social criteria into account when making decisions.

"The good news is that things are getting more transparent," Krosinsky said, "and at the end of the day, that is what we are trying to encourage through initiatives such as the Newsweek Green Rankings and this Factset launch."

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