Finance

Rich nations accused of inflating climate adaptation finance figures

Japan labelled loans for roads and bridges as “climate adaptation” finance, while the World Bank counted support for Nepal to rebuild from an earthquake

Exclusive: Japan uses ‘environmental’ fund to finance Vietnamese coal plant

The Japan Bank for International Cooperation approved a loan to the controversial Vung Ang 2 coal project from a facility intended for “environmental preservation”

Poor and island states highlight toll of climate disasters in submissions to UN

In their updated national contributions to the Paris Agreement, vulnerable countries say they need more financial support to cope with extreme weather and rising seas

France and UK lead push for climate finance to restore nature

Campaigners welcomed commitments to ramp up funding for biodiversity but raised concerns it came at the expense of other climate and aid spending

China launches world’s largest carbon market for power sector

China’s national emissions trading scheme could become a significant lever for climate action, but experts warn that it will do little to curb emissions in the short term

Gas pipeline investment shows flaws in EU ‘climate bank’ approach

The European Climate Bank claimed its €1 billion investment in the Southern Gas Corridor was “climate neutral”, based on mistaken assumptions

UN-led carbon market suspends formal project registration after 2020

Countries are under mounting pressure to resolve carbon trading rules at Cop26, as the future of the Clean Development Mechanism hangs in the balance

UK plans climate donor summit to address ‘dismal’ support for poorer nations

The presidency of next year’s Cop26 climate talks will bring vulnerable countries and donors together to address climate and development challenges

Poor nations call for more financial support to cope with climate impacts

At a summit of least developed countries, leaders said they needed aid to overcome climate disasters and put ambitious climate plans into action

Christine Lagarde must change course to a green coronavirus recovery

The European Central Bank has pumped an estimated €100 billion of Covid bailout cash into polluting sectors, despite its chief’s climate-friendly rhetoric

Finance

Green Climate Fund

UN fund pays Indonesia for forest protection as deforestation rises

Campaigners accuse the Green Climate Fund of letting governments game the UN’s Redd+ forest protection scheme, as Indonesia is awarded $103 million

‘Historic opportunity’ – Climate Weekly

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Coronavirus enters Liberia after observer returns from Green Climate Fund meeting

The GCF’s board meeting was held in Switzerland after some members objected to hold the session online, one delegate said

Democratic contenders in Iowa caucus aim to rejoin Paris accord in green goals

Candidates pledged to boost climate finance for developing nations and break US dependence on fossil fuels

How to make the Green Climate Fund a better force for change

Vastly more of the fund’s money should go to projects that adapt to the impacts of climate change

Green Climate Fund replenishment fails to fill hole left by Trump’s US

After the US, Russia, and Australia did not contribute, other developed countries fell $500m short of the fund’s starting capital

As rich countries slow walk green finance, Putin offers Africa an alternative

Two summits in one week presented a choice for African leaders: stalled promises of climate finance in Paris or business deals in Sochi

Poor countries will hold the rich to account on climate finance

The major UN climate fund is running short of money, will rich countries live up to the promises they have given?

Green Climate Fund

Carbon markets

Brazil sets ‘indicative’ goal of carbon neutrality by 2060

Brazil is seeking to join the net zero club, but campaigners denounced its pledge as meaningless while deforestation rises under President Bolsonaro

Mark Carney oversees blueprint for scaling up carbon market as offset demand soars

With more and more businesses setting net zero emissions targets, the voluntary carbon market needs stronger quality control to scale up, says UN special envoy

Peru and Switzerland sign ‘world first’ carbon offset deal under Paris Agreement

In an agreement that took two years to negotiate, Peru will get finance for sustainable development projects while Switzerland takes credit for the emissions cuts

Fate of UN-led carbon market to be decided behind closed doors

The executive board is considering an extension of the Clean Development Mechanism beyond 2020, under industry pressure but with no political mandate

Despite socialist scepticism, Cuba shows interest in carbon trading

In its national climate plan, Cuba indicated it would like to sell carbon credits on an international market, a concept previously opposed by socialist allies

‘Final blow’ to aviation climate plan as EU agrees to weaken rules

EU member states will back an industry proposal to reduce airlines’ climate obligations in response to the coronavirus pandemic, at the UN aviation forum

Delay to climate talks deepens uncertainty over future of carbon markets

Project developers in poor countries are struggling to attract finance, as deadlock on international carbon trading rules cannot be resolved before November 2021

Airlines could get free pass on climate for five years under industry proposal

The industry is lobbying to rewrite the rules of a UN aviation pact, in a move researchers say would remove pressure to invest in clean flying technology

Carbon markets

Carbon bubble

Oil tanker investments at risk from climate action, report says

Strong action on climate change would shrink demand for vessels by a third, impacting investment decisions being made now, analysts say

Asset managers worth $15 trillion make climate risk promise to Macron

The French president gathered the world’s biggest investors this week to push them to back climate-friendly projects

Gas companies face Californian wipe-out, say S&P, Moody’s

Ratings agencies say the state’s bid to go 100% renewable poses a ‘significant threat’ to gas generators’ credit stability

Australian bank sued over failure to disclose climate risks

Shareholders are taking the Commonwealth Bank to court, alleging that it is misleading investors about its financial position

Planned gas investments will blow 1.5C climate target, say analysts

Report by Climate Action Tracker warns that overly bullish gas demand forecasts will lead to stranded assets or an unsafe future climate

Exxon shareholders win ‘historic’ climate vote against board’s advice

Shareholders in world’s largest private oil company won a victory that signals deep unease about climate change amongst major investors

Exxon shareholder rebellion gains momentum ahead of climate vote

Major investors BlackRock and Vanguard could tip the balance and force oil firm to publicly divulge risk clean technology and regulations pose to its business

UK is in no position to lecture Saudis on oil dependence

PM Theresa May has offered to help wean Saudi Arabia off oil, but her government’s subsidies to North Sea producers are a poor model for the Middle East petrostate

Carbon bubble

Climate finance

UK aid budget cuts undermine trust ahead of Cop26 summit, experts warn

As developing countries prepare to negotiate a scaling up of climate finance at next year’s Cop26, the UK host faces criticism for reneging on its aid commitment

EIB approves €1 trillion green investment plan to become ‘climate bank’

The EU investment arm’s climate roadmap ends lending to airport expansions but does not require all the bank’s intermediaries to have decarbonisation plans

Asian development banks resist coal phase-out pledge at French summit

Despite net zero pledges from the governments of China, Japan and South Korea, the ADB and AIIB are reluctant to commit to reducing finance to fossil fuels

As young people, we urge financial institutions to stop financing fossil fuels

Development banks supporting dirty projects are exacerbating climate chaos. This year needs to be a turning point to a just and sustainable future

OECD: One-fifth of climate finance goes to adaptation as share of loans grows

Donor countries mobilised $78.9 billion of climate aid in 2018, but developing nations are expected to pay back nearly three quarters of the money

Oxfam: Rich countries are not delivering on $100bn climate finance promise

Nearly 80% of climate finance is in the form of loans that must be repaid, adding to the debt burden of the poorest countries, anti-poverty campaigners found

Ballooning debt cripples poor countries’ hopes of green recovery from Covid

Vulnerable countries are struggling to survive the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, let alone build back better, as debts mount up

Campaigners confront IMF chief over green recovery contradictions

Analysis shows IMF advice to countries accessing Covid-19 emergency funds fails to systematically address climate risks and implicitly endorses fossil fuel subsidies

Climate finance

Divestment

Malaysian bank to phase out coal finance, in a victory for campaigners

CIMB has been hailed as the first major bank in an emerging market to publish a coal exit strategy, after investing $2.6 billion in the sector last decade

Coronavirus: investors and policymakers must shift to increase resilience

Incentives for long-term sustainability, an end to fossil fuel subsidies, more telework are all needed to make the global economy resilient to shocks like Covid-19

South Korea urged to exit coal by 2029 to stick to Paris climate agreement

Climate Analytics research group calls on Seoul to phase out existing coal-fired power plants, stop new construction and halt funds for coal projects in other Asian nations

‘Trundling over to Africa’ – Climate Weekly

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Trump criticises ‘prophets of doom’ in Davos and touts fossil fuels

Trump, Thunberg set out radically different visions for the economy and climate in the 21st century

Finally saying the F-words at UN climate talks 

International negotiations have always focused on carbon emissions, not the coal, oil and gas that create them. That’s changing

European Central Bank should ‘gradually eliminate’ carbon assets: Lagarde

Nominee to lead the bank told MEPs it could adopt new measures to prefer green investments if she is confirmed

European Investment Bank moots fossil fuel lending ban

The world’s largest development bank proposed a pivot to clean energy, in a draft plan for consideration by EU finance ministers in September

Divestment

Green bonds

Ex-UN climate chief calls for green bonds to hit $1 trillion by 2020

Christiana Figueres is urging public authorities and corporates to scale up climate-friendly infrastructure investment by 2020, under the “green bond pledge”

India raises $400m green bond to fund renewables drive

Money raised by the Power Finance Corporation will support solar and wind projects, contributing to national renewables target of 175GW capacity by 2022

Fiji announces $50m ‘climate bond’ ahead of COP23 presidency

Prime minister Frank Bainimarama says money raised with help from the World Bank sets an example for innovative green finance to protect the vulnerable

China is taking the green bond market by storm

Beijing’s sustainable finance push is bearing fruit, with a world-leading $36.9bn worth of green bonds issued last year

Risky business: G20 panel to order climate stress tests

Donald Trump’s US election win may damage the Paris climate deal, but climate risk reporting rules for businesses could radically change the investment landscape

Poland green bond issue will not fund coal, says official

Investors are sceptical about Warsaw bid to finance renewables, given its coal-heavy energy policy

UK pitches China for climate-friendly finance trillions

London’s expertise places it in pole position to channel private finance to China, as superpower seeks to invest around $4 trillion a year in infratsructure

Green bonds must keep the green promise

Robust standards are urgently needed to channel capital debt markets into climate-friendly projects, says WWF France chief Pascal Canfin

Green bonds