Mining executives ‘live in denial’: Barrick Gold’s Mark Bristow and Blackrock’s Evy Hambro mull ESG trends – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – March 10, 2021)

Bristow, a passionate advocate that mining projects are the best means
for impoverished countries to raise the skills of their workforce as it
can create high-paying jobs for engineers and geologists, said many
investors are ignoring the issue of world poverty.

There’s a “fundamental shift” underway in the equity markets, according to Evy Hambro, global head of thematic and sector based investing for Blackrock, considered one of the largest funds in the world with US$6.5 trillion under management.

Hambro, considered among the most influential investors in mining because of the size of his investment portfolio, was speaking about the number of investors whose decisions are increasingly guided or affected by a company’s environmental, social and governance record, also known as ESG.

“I think this is just an evolution that we’re going through … (and) I don’t think we’re anywhere near the end of it,” Hambro said.

“I think we’re just starting and the scale of the flows that Blackrock is seeing in terms of the money that’s coming in this direction is just extraordinary.”

The comments were made at the Prospectors and Developers’ Association of Canada’s annual conference on Tuesday, held virtually for the first time ever, where he fielded questions about the future of mining and the impact of ESG on a panel alongside Mark Bristow, chief executive of Barrick Gold Corp.

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