Policy Lever: Enhancing Market Practice
ExamplesKey approaches include:
- Fiduciary duty and capacity: clarifying that duties to clients include sustainability factors and including requirements for knowledge and training on sustainability for fiduciaries.
- Incentives: Encouraging asset owners to ensure better alignment of incentives along the investment chain.
- Prudential risk management regulation: Integrating sustainability into guidance & requirements on risk management and controls.
- Stress tests: Developing scenarios to test impact of environmental shocks on assets and business models.
- Capital requirements: Calibrating capital requirements to incorporate environmental factors.
- Disclosure requirements: Making environmental reporting by financial institutions and non-financial corporations mandatory.
- Equity analysis: Encouraging greater transparency in equity analysis of incorporation of sustainability factors.
- Credit ratings: Encouraging the integration of sustainability risk factors into credit analysis.
- Green assets Adjusting standards and rules to facilitate capital raising (e.g. green bonds, green sukuks, green IPOs, yieldcos).
- Indexes: Ensuring that benchmarks and indices reflect critical sustainability factors.
ImpactsThese measures provide critical foundations of information needed to sensitise financial decision making to environmental impacts and risks, but they are likely to have a modest impact unless they are combined with additional shifts that make these risks financially material.
Green ratings for projects and financing for companies as part of a green credit information system makes it possible to evaluate the positive and negative environmental externalities of these projects and enterprises in a science-based manner and justify the decision-making of fiscal subsidies or penalties, discounts of bank interest rates and bond financing cost. This
In recent years, a plurality of different governance initiatives has emerged that are designed to expand the disclosure of environmental risk within financial markets. There is evidence for policy convergence among different initiatives but it lacks the enforcement necessary for coherence, and contributes to uncertainty within the financial sector over the impact of environmental risk. This uncertainty justifies an expanded role of international
An India Advisory Council of the UNEP India Inquiry was convened by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). This report highlights key proposals emerging from their discussions for aligning the Indian financial system with sustainability. In the Indian context, they call for development of a more robust and resilient ‘sustainability-oriented market framework’ focused
Placing Indonesia’s economy onto a green and sustainable development pathway, as envisaged in the National Long Term Development Plan, will require a large mobilization of investment. Estimates of the annual investment needed are in the order of US$300‐530 billion, with a large portion of this investment needed in critical infrastructure, as well as environmentally sensitive
As a contribution to the UNEP Inquiry the Brazilian Bankers Federation FEBRABAN established a partnership with the Center for Sustainability Studies at Getulio Vargas Foundation (GVCes) to develop three studies on the practice and potential for green finance in Brazil. The first looks at the legislation, regulation, and public policies aimed at socio-environmental themes related to the financial
Bangladesh has been a leader in developing policies to shape a greener and more inclusive financial system. It has a suite of green banking regulations and policies including concessional green refinancing, credit quotas for green finance and guidance and requirements on environmental due diligence. Green finance is growing but it remains modest compared to the scale of Bangladesh’s
The Inquiry collaborated in an 18-month project, Greening China’s Financial System, carried out by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) and the Finance Research Institute (FRI), Development Research Center (DRC) of the State Council. The aim was to develop specific proposals for greening China’s financial system, based on an analysis of current practice in China
This report highlights experience from France in improving the integration of sustainability issues into financial decision-making. A key area of focus has been on improving information and market analysis. Environmental, social and governance (ESG) reporting requirements were first introduced in the New Economics Regulation law of 2001, and strengthened by the 2010 ‘Grenelle II’ law and 2015 the
This paper looks at the steps that the UK has taken towards a sustainable financial system shaped by its role as a global financial centre and a distinctive dynamic between social entrepreneurs and civil society organisations, market innovation and policy frameworks.The City of London is not only home to some of the world’s largest financial markets, but
While US financial institutions have at times enjoyed a reputation of being something of a laggard on sustainability issues versus their European counterparts, significant changes and innovations are under way which are beginning to drive meaningful change. Record levels of awareness on sustainability issues in the US, including from millennials, are accelerating activities such as: Increased levels of