EU ministers must push for action on climate risk to protect investors | WWF

EU ministers must push for action on climate risk to protect investors

Posted on 22 April 2016
A localised storm typical of the arid lands.
© John E. Newby/WWF
Brussels, Belgium - 22 April 2016

Today, EU economy and finance ministers can take a step towards protecting billions in investments from becoming carbon stranded assets.

For the first time they will discuss ‘carbon risk stress testing’ for EU financial firms, better disclosure regimes and how to accelerate investment in green infrastructure at their meeting in Amsterdam.

Such tests would help money be redirected from polluters towards sustainable, safer sectors.

“It is hard to understand why the EU – and notably the Commission - have until now delayed any policy action on this issue. Alarm bells are being sounded on climate risk to investments by central banks. Failing to act today will make tomorrow’s bill an awful lot more expensive,” commented Sébastien Godinot, Economist at WWF European Policy Office.

“EU policy action is required to protect the pensions and savings of millions of European citizens. Economy ministers must this week call on the European Commission to propose relevant policies to assess and mitigate risks and boost opportunities – with the review of the Capital Markets Union in 2017 a major opportunity for implementation,” stated Camilla de Ste Croix, Senior Policy Officer at ShareAction.

Worldwide, investors are increasingly taking action to assess and reduce their climate risk exposure, scaling up their renewable investments and shying away from coal assets which are losing value and going bankrupt. Other assets could well be at risk from flooding, extreme weather and other climate-change related disasters.

A Financial Stability Board Task Force and G20 Green Finance Study Group have been set up in recent months, and numerous central banks and financial advisory bodies have issued warnings on climate risk to assets, including the European Systemic Risk Board.

More information:

WWF
Sarah Azau
Communication and Media Officer (Climate & Energy)
sazau@wwf.eu
Phone: +32 2 743 88 06 / Mobile: + 32 473 57 31 37
 
ShareAction
Grace Hetherington
Press and Communications Officer
grace.hetherington@shareaction.org
Phone: +44 20 3475 7859
 
A localised storm typical of the arid lands.
© John E. Newby/WWF Enlarge