How to Green your RRSP / TFSA

Investing comes with risk. This article is a general discussion of the merits and risks associated with these ETFs, not a specific recommendation. Speak to an investment professional and make sure your portfolio is diversified. Tim Nash owns shares of PZD and EVX. Tim does not own shares of the other ETFs or companies mentioned in this article.

For Canadians who made the RRSP deadline this year, the question now becomes "How should I invest my rebate?"

Here are 3 smart strategies that are both RRSP and TFSA eligible to enhance your portfolio and invest in companies that are good for the environment:

The first strategy is investing in clean technologies with PowerShares Cleantech Portfolio (PZD).  It's a great way to get exposure to the broad cleantech sector.  This fund holds companies the derive the majority of their revenues from the green economy.  Looking at the holdings, it’s very diversified across green sectors and includes companies that make things like batteries for electric cars (Johnson Controls), energy management systems (Schneider Electric), and renewable energy like wind (Vestas) ,solar (SMA Solar Technologies), and geothermal heat pumps (WaterFurnace).

Another great option is Market Vectors Environmental Services Fund (EVX).  This fund holds companies that make money cleaning up pollution left by industry.  It's a tricky one because some people don't feel comfortable that these companies would go bankrupt if there was no more pollution.  However, lots of people feel that waste is inevitable in the medium-term so we might as well make money while we clean up and remediate our land, air, and water.

Finally, the last strategy is investing in water infrastructure. I wrote a whole blog about it here, so needless to say I feel that it’s a very compelling investment theme moving forward.

Each of these three strategies will help diversify your portfolio by giving you exposure to important sectors that are often overlooked in traditional indices and funds.  At the same time, you can feel good knowing that you're investing in companies who are helping to build a more sustainable future.

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