UN launches Green Finance Platform to improve banks and business interactions
The UN's Green Growth Knowledge Platform (GGKP) has launched two new platforms to improve the dialogue and actions between the finance sector and businesses in order to accelerate the growth of green finance.
The GGKP, which is led by the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), UNIDO and the World Bank, has this week launched The Green Industry Platform and the Green Finance Platform at the High-level Political Forum for Sustainable Development in New York.
The aims of the platforms are to provide financial services firms and the private sector with the latest data, insight, guidance and tools to improve uses of and access to green finance.
The GGKP’s chair and former Secretary-General of the UN Ban Ki-moon said; “These are especially exciting times for the GGKP, already the world’s largest dedicated repository of green growth resources, case studies, and national documents.”
The Green Finance Platform will provide banks, insurance, and investment firms with a central hub to start and scale new innovations that help mobilise the green economic transition. Tools set to be included in the platform include those that can help businesses and investors to assess natural capital risks and opportunities and global reports on how the financial sector can align with sustainable development.
The Green Industry Platform will empower small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with technical support to start acting on sustainability in relation to resource use, waste levels and operational improvements. This transformation will be tied to bottom-line improvements.
Both platforms will connect policy, finance and business together in order to uncover new green finance mechanisms.
“The green economy offers tremendous opportunity for businesses, financial institutions, governments, and people – it is the economy of the future,” the UN Environment’s executive director Inger Anderson said.
“Quick and easy access to the latest knowledge and innovation is critical to ensuring we are able to build on good practices that already exist and ensure even greater benefits for nature and people.”
Green finance groundswell
The platform launches arrive in the same month that the UK Government unveiled its highly anticipated Green Finance Strategy, outlining how the finance sector and better climate disclosure from corporates can drive progress towards wider action on climate change and the push towards net-zero emissions.
The strategy features investment and funding increases into green projects, infrastructures and homes and is built on findings from the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), led by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Bank of England Governor Mark Carney.
Following the launch, the chief executive of the Green Finance Institute, which is spearheading the strategy, told edie how climate disclosure, policy signals and a robust business case for sustainability will transform how corporates engage with the finance community.
And, with the likes of HSBC and ING upping their green finance offerings, edie has outlined eight key reasons why green finance is going mainstream.