Moving to a Low-Carbon Economy: The Financial Impact of the Low-Carbon Transition

Performance Framework: Flows

Many countries, as well as international development finance institutions are beginning to measure and report on actual flows of finance for sustainable development. There are as yet no harmonised standards, but common broad categories are often considered:
  • Green finance funded by, or directly leveraged by public investment
  • Commercial investment into key green sectors and product types
  • Flows of finance covered by environmental due diligence or environmental criteria
  • Value at risk from environmental hazards and associated policy shifts.
Countries that are building systems for measuring actual flows of green finance include Bangladesh, Brazil and China.

Inquiry Publications

  • The Value of Everything

    Date: 15-Dec-2015

    The purpose of this paper is to begin the process of clarifying global asset value especially as may be affected by the sustainability (or lack thereof) of financial systems, and not just that which is represented by institutional assets under management. This paper, therefore, will answer this question of what is the actual total value of

  • Greening the Financial System: Enhancing Competitiveness Through Economic Development

    Date: 16-May-2017

    This briefing summarises the discussions held during a roundtable for market and policy leaders in Washington, D.C. on 20 April 2017. The goal of the event was to explore pathways to scale and speed up green finance and to harness its benefits for long-term sustainable growth and competitiveness. The key messages are: Green finance made

  • Sustainable Infrastructure and Finance

    Date: 13-Jun-2016

    Infrastructure is often referred to as the backbone of the global economy and plays a fundamental role in societies by enhancing the quality of life and increasing productivity. In addition to its effects on society and the economy, infrastructure can have significant impacts on the environment, depending on the choice of infrastructure. Approximately 75% of

  • Experience and Lessons from South Africa: An Initial Review

    Date: 17-Jun-2016

    This paper provides an outline of South Africa’s financial sector, the environmental and social issues it faces, the response of government and financial regulators and the extent to which has resulted in measurable sustainable investment flows. In South Africa environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations appear on the agenda of strategic discussions and are part of the

  • Green Foreign Direct Investment in Developing Countries

    Date: 23-Oct-2017

    This paper focuses on the actual and potential role of foreign direct investment (FDI) in achieving the transition to a low-carbon, just and sustainable world and, more specifically, FDI flows into developing countries. The particular implications of FDI on the environment – both potentially positive and negative – have given rise to an interest in

  • China Report: Demand for Green Finance

    Date: 06-Oct-2015

    This paper reviews the statistics on investment in fixed assets of key green sectors in China to date and estimates the demand for green finance over the next five years, from 2015 to 2020. It estimates over 3 per cent of GDP—RMB 1,642 billion (USD 260 billion)—was invested into core green industry and infrastructure sectors in 2012.

  • China Report: Lessons from the Development of Green Finance in China

    Date: 06-Oct-2015

    With the initial progress of China’s green finance market, some lessons are emerging that are useful both for the further development of the green finance system and for other emerging market countries embarking on green finance development.  Strategic political commitment has been the key driver for China’s development of green finance, but translating this into

  • China Report: Problems and Difficulties in the Development of China’s Green Finance

    Date: 06-Oct-2015

    In recent years, financial market policy-makers and regulators in China have shown leadership in advancing their roles in creating a green financial system. However, the impacts to date have been constrained by countervailing forces. In particular, the performance criteria on which local government officials are assessed still prioritizes economic growth over environmental compliance. The positive

  • China Report: Alignment of Investment Strategies with Climate Scenarios

    Date: 06-Oct-2015

    Financial institutions today are unable to measure their exposure to climate change. There are equally no approaches to inform on the alignment of their investment strategies with national or international environmental goals. This report outlines international developments in measuring and managing climate related risk in instituional investment and banking. It outlines implications for regulators in

  • China Report: A Framework for Green Finance

    Date: 06-Oct-2015

    The existence of externalities has made it hard to quantify the intrinsic value of the “green mountains and blue water” of the natural environment. This has led to a dysfunction in traditional financial markets, which are delivering an insufficient supply of capital for green development and an oversupply of capital for highly polluting activities. As a new financial

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