Sustainable ETFs: Good for The Planet, Good For Your Portfolio?

Can you grow your money while also protecting the environment and supporting a good cause? It might sound utopian, but it’s easier than you think. Investing in sustainable companies has become a popular trend, and with BUX Zero you can do exactly that through a range of sustainable ETFs. If you want to invest sustainably, there are a few different ways to go about it:

  1. Invest based on a company’s ESG (environmental, social and governance) score.

  2. Invest according to certain exclusion criteria.

  3. Impact investing.

Let’s explain each of them below :point_down:t4:

ESG investing is one of the easiest strategies to employ. Every company is given an ESG score, which rates according to environment, social and governance criteria. You can simply pick the highest rated companies. However, this option is arguably the least sustainable of the three as the scores are evaluated by third-party providers, like fund managers.

Using the exclusion strategy means excluding certain investments from your portfolio. For example, maybe you don’t want to support industries like alcohol, weapons or tobacco. Or perhaps you want to avoid investing in businesses that violate international conventions.

The final option, impact investing, means investing in companies which are actively contributing to positive environmental and social outcomes.

Sustainable and profitable? :thinking:

Companies can indeed make a positive difference while generating profits. In fact, studies show that “green” investments often generate similar or even better returns than traditional funds. Learn more about this in our previous article on sustainable investing.

ESG investments have also grown strongly in the past year. In 2021, some $120 billion was allocated to these funds, which is more than double the $51 billion in 2020.

Are you interested in investing in sustainable ESG funds with BUX Zero? We’ve got plenty! Keep reading to find a summary of each one, along with a brief description and the companies they include. Of course, as an investor you’ll want to know how a fund performed in the past, so you’ll also find year-to-date returns for each ETF. Keep in mind that past performance is no guarantee of future results.

To learn more about ETFs, visit our ETF Knowledge Centre.

Sustainable investing | Investing with BUX experts :nerd_face:

UBS ETF – MSCI Pacific Socially Responsible UCITS ETF

This ETF invests primarily in companies in the Asia-Pacific region, with a focus on social responsibility. Companies include Sony, Fujitsu and Daikin Industries.

  • Year-to-date return: 0.65%.

  • Fund size: €1.014 billion

  • Number of holdings: 94

UBS ETF – MSCI Japan Socially Responsible UCITS ETF

This ETF invests in Japanese companies that prioritise social responsibility. Multinationals like Fujitsu, Fujifilm, Panasonic and Sony are included, as well as some smaller companies.

  • Year-to-date return: -3.61%.

  • Fund size: €699 million

  • Number of holdings: 57


UBS ETF (LU) MSCI USA Socially Responsible UCITS ETF

Environmental protection, social responsibility and ESG criteria are also very important to the companies in this ETF. Companies that generate a large part of their revenue from non-sustainable areas are actively excluded. Some of the companies in this ETF include Tesla, Microsoft, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Blackrock and Cisco.

  • Year-to-date return: 22.21%.

  • Fund size: €1.922 billion

  • Number of holdings: 124

Lyxor Global Gender Equality (DR) UCITS ETF

ESG isn’t just about environmental protection but also social responsibility. This ETF includes companies that promote gender equality in their corporate policy. The fund excludes companies in the weapons, gambling and tobacco industries. Within this ETF, you’ll find companies like Ford, Merck, Microsoft and Spotify.

  • Year-to-date return: 16.24%.

  • Fund size: €51 million

  • Number of holdings: 151


Lyxor MSCI New Energy ESG Filtered (DR) UCITS ETF

Here, the focus is on renewable energy, including solar, wind and hydroelectric power. This ETF includes companies from the US, Spain, France, Denmark and more. Some companies included are Schneider Electric, Enphase Energy and Plug Power.

  • Year-to-date return: -16.33%.

  • Fund size: €1.08 billion

  • Number of holdings: 39

Lyxor MSCI Europe ESG Leaders (DR) UCITS ETF

If you want to invest in Europe’s leading ESG companies, this is the ETF for you. It includes big names like ASML, Unilever, SAP, Allianz and GlaxoSmithKline.

  • Year-to-date return: 15.32%.

  • Fund size: €1.483 billion

  • Number of holdings: 199

Lyxor MSCI World ESG Trend Leaders (DR) UCITS ETF

With over 750 stocks, this ETF can really help you diversify your investments. All companies in this fund have a strong ESG profile compared to others in their sector. Companies with a negative impact on society or the environment are actively excluded. This ETF includes companies like Tesla, Adobe, Microsoft, NVIDIA, Alphabet and ASML.

  • Year-to-date return: 19.68%.

  • Fund size: €590 million

  • Number of holdings: 784

Lyxor MSCI USA ESG Trend Leaders (DR) UCITS ETF

This ETF includes more than 300 large and medium-sized companies from the US with a high ESG score. Its holdings include Microsoft, Tesla, Alphabet, Salesforce, Adobe and NVIDIA.

  • Year-to-date return: 26.30%.

  • Fund size: €295 million

  • Number of holdings: 321

Rize Sustainable Future of Food ETF

This ETF follows the growth of sustainable food companies around the world. Companies like Beyond Meat, FMC and Calavo are included. The Future of Food ETF won the 2021 ESG Investing Award for Best ESG Investment Fund.

  • Year-to-date return: -5.01%.

  • Fund size: EUR 248 million

  • Number of holdings: 45

Rize Environmental Impact ETF

This is a relatively new ETF and focuses on companies that are taking active steps to create a greener world. The ETF includes companies like Tesla, Sunpower and First Solar.

  • Year-to-date return: -% (not yet available)

  • Fund size: €12 million.

  • Number of holdings: 99

Van Eck Sustainable World Equal Weight ETF

This ETF invests in companies across the globe, primarily from the developed world, that are focused on sustainability. All of these companies are equally weighted, but the North American, European and Asian regions are limited to a maximum weight of 40%. It includes companies like NVIDIA, Tesla, ASML and Oracle.

  • Year-to-date return: YTD: 15.37%.

  • Fund size: €455 million

  • Number of holdings: 253

iShares US Socially Responsible ETF

This ETF only includes companies from the United States, and each one has a high ESG score. The maximum weight of a single company is limited to 5%. It includes big names like Tesla, Microsoft, NVIDIA, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola and Walt Disney.

  • Year-to-date return: 23.66%.

  • Fund size: €7.872 billion

  • Number of holdings: 133

iShares Japan Socially Responsible ETF

This ETF only includes companies from Japan, and each one has a strong track record with environmental protection and social responsibility. Some of the companies in the fund are Sony, Fujitsu, Fujifilm and Softbank.

  • Year-to-date return: 1.63%.

  • Fund size: €836 million.

  • Number of holdings: 65

iShares Global Clean Energy ETF

The defining theme of this ETF is “clean energy”. The fund includes many popular renewable energy companies, like First Solar, Iberdrola and Plug Power.

  • Year-to-date return: -40.75%.

  • Fund size: €4,087 million.

  • Number of holdings: 76

iShares Emerging Markets Socially Responsible ETF

This ETF focuses on companies with a high ESG score from emerging markets. It’s heavily weighted to stocks in China, Taiwan, South Africa and South Korea. The maximum weight of individual companies is limited to 5%. It includes Nio, LG Chemical, BYD, Naspers and more.

  • Year-to-date return: -1.89%

  • Fund size: €3.11 billion

  • Number of holdings: 180

You can find more information about all these ETFs by clicking their titles which will take you directly to their profiles in Bux Zero.

What are your thoughts on sustainable investing? Do you think that sustainability is the future of investing? Let’s discuss in the comments :brown_heart:

All figures correct as of January 26 2022.

All views, opinions, and analyses in this article should not be read as personal investment advice and individual investors should make their own decisions or seek independent advice. This article has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and is considered a marketing communication.


I reckon that most people will still invest to build up their wealth. But my hope is it will go more hand in hand with sustainability in the future. Profit and sustainable instead of profit or sustainable.

Don’t really like the idea that I’m contributing to companies that destroy nature. For instance rainforests. I hasn’t stopped me from investing in Shell though.

On the other hand I dont invest in Facebook because I despise their businessmodel and most of their products. That is also socially responsible I think.


Just out of curiosity, What do you despise about Facebook’s business model? The tracking or something else?


Well tracking is a part of it. But Google does the same and I don’t feel resentment towards them.

I don’t like what influence social media has on our society. It’s filled with fake news, fake pictures, hate speech. It drowns out any reasonable voices. I don’t see the benefits of social media in its current form anymore.

Not all social media is bad. This is also a form of social media. But for me Meta and Tiktok and Twitter have a bad reputation.


Certainly some very interesting ETF’s there like the sustainable food one :slight_smile:


Hmm interesting. I can certainly understand it when it comes to twitter and facebook… That being said, to play devils advocate, I do think there are some wonderful things about social media, even in this form. It al depends on the subjects you choose to interact with and the people you follow.

In my opinion most people only talk negative about social media while forgetting that if you want to, it can also make your world expand. Especially when it comes to niche communities.

But I might be biased, because I found an amazing community of artists on Instagram, which Inspire me everyday and changed my life for the better! :grin: And I’m fairly sure there is a great community about almost everything. (Except maybe politics… Just stay away from that and your life will be better).

That being said, I 100% agree with the fake news, etc. But this is not a social media only problem (see companies like Fox news and CNN disagreeing on things that are supposed to be ‘facts’). I feel this is an inherent problem with open news. The biggest blessing of free speech, and the biggest curse is that it is not censored.