Cop26

Momentum Builds Behind Campaign To Unlock Climate Finance by COP26

130 investors and US$5 trillion in AUM added to Investor Agenda campaign since June.

Governments preparing for COP26 have been told to prioritise five key policy areas to accelerate climate investment by a group of almost 600 institutional investors representing US$46 trillion in assets under management.

The investors call for mandatory climate risk disclosure, strengthened national commitments which limit climate change to 1.5 degrees Celsius, detailed net-zero pathways with interim targets and sector-specific decarbonisation roadmaps, domestic policy alignment with net-zero targets, and post-Covid-19 recovery plans which support transition to net-zero emissions and enhance resilience.

Domestic policies specified by the investors as necessary for achieving emissions reduction targets include robust carbon pricing, removal of fossil fuel subsidies, phase-out of thermal coal-based electricity generation, avoidance of new carbon-intensive infrastructure, and the development of just transition plans.

The initial signatories to the 2021 Global Investor Statement to Governments on the Climate Crisis, which included 457 investors with US$41 trillion assets under management, were announced in June 2021, before the G7 Summit.

The second wave of signatories to the statement, which bring the total to 587, are being announced during the United Nations General Assembly, which starts today, followed by Climate Week 2021 in New York.

The statement remains open for additional investors to sign until COP26 opens in Glasgow in November.

Organisers describe the statement as “the strongest-ever unified call from investors for governments to raise their climate ambition”. Failure to implement meaningful policies, they warn, risks missing out on “enormous” investment opportunities.

“As the world prepares to gather for COP26, we encourage all countries to significantly strengthen their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) for 2030 and to ensure a planned transition to net-zero emissions by 2050 or sooner”, the joint statement read.

Last week, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) confirmed publication later this month of a report based on the NDCs submitted by 58% of the 191 parties to the Paris Agreement ahead of its 31 July deadline. The UNFCCC extended the deadline for laggards to 12 October, which will be followed by an updated report on 25 October.

The statement was organised by the seven founding partners of the Investor Agenda, which coordinates climate change advocacy action on behalf of institutional investors globally. These include Asia Investor Group on Climate Change, CDP, Ceres, Investor Group on Climate Change, Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change, Principles for Responsible Investment and UNEP Finance Initiative.

“The Global Investor Statement demonstrates the appetite for policy to support the measures being implemented by investors – including steps such as pricing greenhouse gas emissions, ending fossil fuel subsidies and supporting a shift away from high-emitting sources of energy,” said Fiona Reynolds, CEO of the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) and Steering Committee member of the Investor Agenda.

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