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UK Finance Sector Continues to Invest in Fossil Fuels

Despite increasing awareness of the economic risks of climate change, the UK financial sector has continued to invest “significant amounts” into fossil fuels, according to the Introductory Guide to Green Finance report. The report by the British All-Party Parliamentary Group on Sustainable Finance said that through investment in “unsustainable activities” such as fossil fuel extraction, finance sector firms have continued to drive climate change and exposed financial institutions to future risks, including legal action. According to the report, it is essential to divert capital flows towards sustainable, low carbon technologies, projects, businesses, and “infrastructure of the future”. It also underlined the “growing need” for increased scrutiny and transparency on greenwash-related issues and the importance of financial institutions to embrace green financing. The UK government has taken some action to improve green finance, including publishing a Greening Finance roadmap in 2021, launching the UK Infrastructure Bank and unveiling plans to roll out economy-wide Sustainability Disclosure Requirements for companies, asset managers and owners and investment products from Q1 2023. The government is also due to announce its green taxonomy which was further delayed from its 1 January 2023 deadline.  

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