Chris leads research on the energy sector for the Americas ESG and climate research team at MSCI. Prior to joining MSCI, he advised clients on global energy-market fundamentals and pricing developments. Chris has extensive experience conducting energy and climate research. He holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University.
Research and Insights
Articles by Chris Cote
How Canadian Asset Owners Are Seizing Investment Opportunities as Risks EvolveBlog | Nov 16, 2023 |
Attendees at the recent MSCI Canadian Institutional Investor Forum discussed and debated the challenges and opportunities created by massive structural, macroeconomic, societal and technological shifts in the investment landscape.
The Future for Oil and Gas ProducersPodcast | Nov 3, 2023 |
Some say oil demand is soon to peak. Well, if that is true, why are some oil and gas producers growing their reserves? If there is uncertainty on how oil will perform in the future, how are oil and gas companies positioning themselves amid an ambiguous low-carbon transition? We try to answer these questions on this episode of ESG now.
The Five Stories of ESG: A Recap EpisodePodcast | Oct 20, 2023 |
This week, we are returning to five stories we have already covered to see what progress has been made (if any!): The Adani Group and its attempt to address a short seller report that questioned the group’s governance that led to a massive loss in market share; the United Auto Workers strikes and the continued struggle in the auto industry; the Inflation Reduction Act and the trillions of dollars of capital is supports; what the EPA’s methane rule has done for the gas industry in the US; and how Exxon has changed after having three seats of its 12 member board taken by over by Engine No. 1, an activist investor worried about carbon emissions.
Engagement Is a Powerful Force in Climate Action5 mins read Blog | Sep 19, 2023 |
As the urgency of addressing climate change continues to grow, investor engagement could be key to holding companies accountable for their environmental impact and influencing corporate climate strategies and net-zero commitments.
Capital for Climate Action Conference: Key Takeaways7 mins read Blog | May 22, 2023 |
MSCI’s Capital for Climate Action Conference brought together leaders from a diverse group of global organizations to untangle the latest developments in the net-zero transition. Here are some of the biggest takeaways.
Tracking our climate goals and next stepsPodcast | May 19, 2023 |
Are you aware of how much progress we are making on addressing climate change? There are all-these-pledges and all-these-plans made by companies, but have those plans been useful? Are they actually making progress on cutting emissions or are they just saying, “yeah we care about it, and we will do….something.” And what are those “somethings?” Are they far away technologies that can suck the bad stuff out of our atmosphere like a sort of techno-savior? Or something else? We answer those questions on this episode of ESG now.
The Climate Transition Is Increasingly About OpportunityResearch Report | May 15, 2023 |
Climate-friendly policies and regulations and the massive reallocation of capital needed in the coming years to ensure a successful shift to a net-zero economy should continue to expand the range of opportunities for both companies and investors.
Net-Zero Alignment: Engaging on Climate ChangeResearch Report | Feb 7, 2023 |
Engagement, in tandem with capital allocation, is a key lever for institutional investors who wish to pursue net-zero targets.
Assessing Clean Tech for ‘S’ and ‘G’2 mins read Quick Take | Nov 29, 2022 |
The U.S. Inflation Reduction Act has ignited interest in developers of clean tech and low-carbon solutions. But what do the differences in the abilities of these firms to manage financially-relevant social and governance risks imply?
What COP27 Means for Companies and Investors9 mins read Blog | Nov 21, 2022 |
COP27 underscored the need for action on corporate climate pledges, the importance of data and a series of initiatives to spur public and private investment for developing countries. We review some of the key developments for companies and investors.
TCFD-Aligned Climate Risk ReportingResearch Report | Jul 25, 2022 |
An increasing number of institutions have started to disclose climate-related risks and opportunities in alignment with TCFD recommendations. MSCI ESG Research data and metrics can be used at the portfolio, sector and security level to support the TCFD reporting framework.
What the War in Ukraine Could Mean for Net-Zero InvestingResearch Report | May 16, 2022 |
Among the devastating effects of the Russia-Ukraine war is the potential to derail the world from its already difficult path to net-zero. We analyzed how the war could affect the world’s carbon emissions and decarbonization efforts — and investors.
Unions & ESG and the IPCC Climate ReportPodcast | Apr 8, 2022 |
This week we saw a landmark win for labor as Amazon workers on Staten Island voted to unionize. The decision and others like it at Starbucks and REI gave us a chance to explore unions from an ESG perspective. Then, we touch on some of the important findings in the recently published IPPC Climate Change 2022: Mitigation of Climate Change report.
Could Europe’s Shift from Russian Gas Accelerate Climate-Transition Risk?5 mins read Blog | Mar 30, 2022 |
Europe’s search for energy sources outside of Russia may slow the low-carbon transition in the short term. Staying within a net-zero cumulative emissions budget would mean fewer emissions later. What might this path mean for investors’ portfolios?
Companies May Not Be Ready for SEC Climate-Disclosure Rules5 mins read Blog | Mar 29, 2022 |
The SEC proposed requirements for U.S. companies to disclose certain climate-related risks, beginning in 2024. To assess whether companies are prepared to meet these requirements, we looked at the emission-disclosure rates of a large sample of U.S. equities.
The US Infrastructure DealPodcast | Nov 12, 2021 |
A USD 1 trillion deal is scheduled to be signed into law by US President Biden on Monday, November 12. The deal, in the White House’s words, is imperative for the US to meet its commitment to reduce U.S. emissions by 50-52% from 2005 levels in 2030, create a 100% carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035, and achieve a net-zero economy by 2050. It allocates funds toward updating the US transportation system, its energy infrastructure, its climate resiliency, and its water system. We discussed how these plans move from the political stratosphere to the more habitable land of economic stimulus.
Constructing Net-Zero Portfolios: Three Approaches4 mins read Blog | Sep 30, 2021 |
While investors around the world are committing to bring the carbon footprints of their portfolios to net-zero by 2050, figuring out how to do so is not a simple matter. What alternatives do investors have?
Net-Zero Alignment: Objectives and Strategic Approaches for InvestorsResearch Report | Sep 20, 2021 |
Investors have a key role in keeping global warming well below 2°C. We examine four strategic levers that investors can use to accelerate companies’ decarbonization: a shift of capital, active stewardship, financing of low-carbon solutions and policy advocacy.
Methane Emissions and Devastating FloodsPodcast | Jul 23, 2021 |
In the world of climate mitigative energy sources, natural gas lives in an uneasy balance. It is viewed by some as a bridge from heavy polluting fossil fuels to lower-emission sources, while others see it as a much more pollutive source than advertised. This is because of the issue of flaring, venting, and fugitive methane emissions along the natural gas supply chain. We discuss the new regulations that are coming to prevent methane emissions that are likely to impact oil and gas companies, and the attempts by some companies to make carbon neutral natural gas sources. Then we discuss the two devastating floods in Germany and China, and what it means for our world’s critical infrastructure.