GLASGOW, Scotland (AP) – Britain on Wednesday called on the global financial industry to channel its vast funds into greener investments to ensure the success of global efforts to curb global warming.
Treasury Chief Rishi Sunak said that while the UK government is providing new funding to help poor countries cope with climate change, “public investments alone are not enough”.
Speaking at the United Nations climate summit in the Scottish city of Glasgow, Sunak said UK financial institutions and listed companies will be required to release plans detailing how bad their investments and their own businesses are. environmentally friendly – to ensure they actually contribute to reductions. in global warming.
As the headquarters of the City of London, one of the world’s major financial centers, the UK “has a responsibility to lead the way” in funding these and other efforts to fight global warming, said Sunak.
Encouraging greener investments is also a major opportunity. The measure is part of a plan that aims to create “the world’s first net-zero aligned financial center” to meet the demands of those looking to profit from the trend towards a low-carbon economy, said Sunak.
Many countries, including Britain, have announced plans to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to ‘net zero’ over the next few decades to help curb man-made climate change.
Cities, states and businesses have also signed on to the target, which means limiting greenhouse gas emissions to the amount that can be absorbed again by natural or man-made means. Experts warn that there are different ways to calculate “net zero” – and deciding on a standard definition is one of the big challenges going forward.
Sunak called for a “historic wall of capital” to help countries, businesses and cities meet their net zero goals – but poor countries angrily noted that Britain and other rich countries had failed. not fulfilled their pledge to provide $ 100 billion per year to finance climate-related projects in the developing world by 2020.
This target should now be reached in 2023.
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has described climate change as both a huge financial challenge, with a price tag of $ 100,000 billion, and “the greatest economic opportunity of our time.”
“Many renewables are now cheaper than alternative carbon-based fuels and have lower long-term operating costs,” she said. “In many cases, it just pays to go green. “
US President Joe Biden earlier this year issued an executive order requiring companies to disclose climate-related financial risks.
Kirka reported from London.
Follow AP’s climate coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/climate.