Our Sustainable Balanced option

CareSuper’s award-winning Sustainable Balanced option is your chance to contribute to a more sustainable world – while still growing your future savings.

We understand sustainable investing is important to many of our members, and that’s why we offer a dedicated option that seeks to respond to social and environmental concerns while delivering strong long-term returns.


At CareSuper we adopt an integrated approach to considering environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks across all our investment options, including the Sustainable Balanced option (SBO). Why? Because we believe this minimises risks, generates better long-term returns and is in line with our members’ interests. For more information about ESG integration across the whole fund go to Responsible investing.


An award-winning investment

Our Sustainable Balanced option was awarded the Lonsec Investment Option Award 2021. The award recognises the quality of our investment process (including ESG integration) and the portfolio design to meet member needs. See all our awards.

So, what sets the Sustainable Balanced option apart? Within our publicly listed shares for this option, our specialist investment managers apply both negative screens and positive themes to the investment selection process to find companies doing business in a sustainable way.
Negative screens (or investment restrictions)

For Overseas and Australian listed shares, our investment managers apply the following investment restrictions:

Restricted activityDescriptionThreshold tolerance
Tobacco manufactureCompanies identified under a common industry classification system as manufacturers of tobacco products.Any involvement in most recent year of financial reporting.*
Civilian firearms manufactureCompanies that manufacture firearms and small arms ammunitions for civilian markets.
Controversial weapons (sales and production)Companies that have any industry tie to cluster munitions, landmines, biological / chemical weapons, depleted uranium weapons, blinding laser weapons, incendiary weapons, and/or non-detectable fragments. Companies that have any industry tie to nuclear weapons are also excluded.
Child LabourCompanies flagged as having been the subject of alleged child labour controversies (within the past three years).Any involvement in past three years of financial reporting.*
Thermal coal productionCompanies that generate revenue from the mining of thermal coal (including lignite, bituminous, anthracite and steam coal) and its sale to external parties. This screen does not flag revenue from metallurgical coal; coal mined for internal power generation (e.g. in the case of vertically integrated power producers); intra-company sales of mined thermal coal; and revenue from coal trading.Greater than 10% revenue (reported or maximum estimated) in most recent year of financial reporting.*
Oil and gas – extraction, production, refining, distribution/retail, pipelines and transport, tradingCompanies that generate combined revenue from: 
• Extraction and production 
• Refining 
• Distribution/retail 
• Pipelines and transport 
• Trading 

of conventional and unconventional oil and gas.
Power production from thermal coal, oil and gasCompanies that generate revenue from thermal coal, liquid fuel and natural gas based power generation.
Power production from nuclear sourcesCompanies that generate revenue from nuclear based power generation.Greater than 30% revenue (reported or maximum estimated) in most recent year of financial reporting.*
Palm oil – less than 80% RSPO certified landCompanies that produce palm oil without sufficient Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) certification.Palm oil producing companies that have less than 80% of their land certified by Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).

For Australian listed shares only, our investment managers apply the following additional investment restrictions:

Restricted activityDescriptionThreshold tolerance
Intensive animal farmingAustralian companies that produce products associated with intensive farming operations.Greater than 10% revenue in most recent year of financial reporting as assessed by our external investment managers.
Animal testing (cosmetic)Australian companies that produce cosmetic products associated with animal testing.
Live animal exportsAustralian companies that engage in live animal export operations.
GamingAustralian companies that operate gambling facilities such as casinos, racetracks or other betting establishments.Greater than 10% revenue (reported or maximum estimated) in most recent year of financial reporting.*
PornographyAustralian companies that produce adult entertainment materials.

Explanatory notes: 

  1. MSCI ESG Research uses total or gross revenue in our Business Involvement Screening Research (BISR) screen revenue computations. Where gross revenue information is not available, MSCI considers net sales or operating revenue as reported by the company in its financial statements for the purpose of revenue estimations. 
  2. ESG data from MSCI is used to identify restricted companies for all restricted activities, with the exception of involvement in intensive animal farming, animal testing (cosmetic), and live animal exports, which are assessed by our external investment managers. 
  3. Exclusions are implemented by our external investment managers, and monitored by both CareSuper and our custodian. 
  4. Restriction lists are updated regularly, using data sourced from MSCI. Following those updates, we inform external investment managers which listed shares are required to be excluded from new and existing investments. 

* “most recent year of financial reporting” refers to the most recent year of financial reporting as recorded in MSCI’s ESG Research.

Positive themes

Overseas and Australian shares

We seek out positive investments that help improve the environment and the quality of our daily life such as:


  • Climate change solutions – insulation to improve energy efficiency and development of renewable energy systems
  • Pollution reduction – waste disposal and wastewater recycling
  • Resource efficiency – efficient lighting, reducing consumption of natural resources, cost-saving solutions to improve water and energy efficiency.
  • Healthcare – better access to health care and addressing healthcare issues
  • Education – improve access to education and provide training and job opportunities
  • Access to safe food and water – sustainable food systems, improved nutrition and improve water equipment and services
  • Access to finance – banking services to people and communities who do not have sufficient access to mainstream financial services.
Aligning with the UN Sustainable Development Goals

With our ongoing process of researching, analysing and monitoring investments, we ensure high ESG standards are being met. We’re not only assessing outcomes against our own benchmarks – our investment managers also choose investments that align with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals in a meaningful way. These goals have a global reach, aiming to combat issues including poverty, inequality and environmental degradation.

Our SBO supports a number of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Goal 1 – No poverty

Goal 3 – Good health

Goal 4 – Quality education

Goal 6 – Clean water and sanitation

Goal 9 – Industry, innovation and infrastructure

Goal 11 – Sustainable cities and communities

Goal 12 – Responsible consumption

Goal 13 – Climate action

Investment features of the Sustainable Balanced option
Explore the return objective, risk level and asset mix for our Sustainable Balanced option.


It’s important to make sure the Sustainable Balanced option is right for you before investing in this option. Consider the following questions first.

  • Are you looking for a way to invest in line with your personal values and make a positive impact on the world we live in through your super investments?
  • Do you want your investments to have a greater focus on ESG and ethical issues, or are you comfortable that ESG considerations are broadly integrated across all options?
  • The Sustainable Balanced option favours environmentally and socially friendly companies and industries, so it will behave differently to the broader market. Are you comfortable with how it may perform in changing market conditions?
  • Have you read all the relevant information about the SBO in the Investment Guide, including the option’s costs, risks and potential returns? Are you happy what you’ve learned suits your investing and personal goals?

If you’re still weighing up your choice, why not ask us for help? Access to financial advice on investment choice is part of your membership. Find out more.

Invest for a brighter future today
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