Finance commits (on paper) $130tn to climate

Mark Carney

Momentum grows for Mark Carney's Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero

Big stages call for big announcements. At COP26, the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero broke the news that it had garnered the support of more than 450 institutions across the world, which have committed their combined $130tn worth of assets to address climate change. GFANZ was created in April 2021 to push the finance industry towards net zero by 2050, using science-based metrics, and setting interim 2030 targets. It also aims to mobilise capital to support emerging and developing countries’ green transition.

Many are reserving judgement until real action is taken and greenwashing concerns resolved. Still, the overall size and breadth of the financial companies involved speaks volume about the role the industry can play, globally, in addressing climate change. Current estimates point to a required investment of between $100tn and $150tn over the next three decades, as noted GFANZ’s chairman and UN special envoy for climate action and finance Mark Carney in the report accompanying the news. 

Among GFANZ signatories are both giants like BlackRock, Citi and Allianz, as well as key emerging market players like Brazil’s Itaú Unibanco and South Africa’s Investec. There is also a Chinese name, the only one in the list: Bin Yuan Capital, an asset manager with a presence in Hong Kong and Shanghai. As the absence of the country’s president, Xi Jinping, was felt at the UN climate conference this year, GFANZ will surely aim to include Chinese banks, the world’s largest, in the list.

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