COP26 Finance Day Speech – GOV.UK
Hello – and welcome to Cop26 Finance Day.
It’s easy to feel intimidated by the scale of the challenge we face.
By rising sea level; droughts and forest fires spread; people driven from their homes.
But I look around this room and I feel optimism.
Because this is the first COP to bring together so many finance ministers, companies and investors from around the world with such a clear common objective:
Keep the promise, made in Paris six years ago, to direct the world’s wealth to protect our planet.
The good news is that the will is there:
At least 80% of the global economy is committed to achieving net zero or carbon neutrality goals.
Our challenge now is to deploy the investments we need to achieve these goals around the world.
To do this, we are now accelerating three actions.
First, we need increased public investment.
And I want to speak directly to the developing countries of the world:
We know you have been devastated by the double tragedy of coronavirus and climate change.
This is why the G20 is mobilizing to speed up debt processing.
That’s why the IMF is planning a new allocation of $ 650 billion in Special Drawing Rights – and Kristalina will talk about that later.
And that is why we will achieve the goal of providing $ 100 billion in climate finance to developing countries.
And while we know we are not reaching it soon enough, we will work closely with developing countries to do more and achieve the goal sooner.
Over the next five years, we will provide a total investment of $ 500 billion to the countries that need it most.
And we can do more today:
I can announce that the UK will commit £ 100million to the Climate Finance Access Working Group, which will make it easier for developing countries to finance what they need faster and easier.
And we are supporting a new capital markets mechanism, which will issue billions of new green bonds here in the UK, to fund renewables in developing countries.
Two real, practical examples of how we are keeping our $ 100 billion pledge.
But public investment alone is not enough. Our second action is to mobilize private funding.
Let me pay a huge tribute to Mark Carney for his leadership – leadership that works.
The Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero has now brought together financial organizations with assets worth over $ 130 trillion in capital to deploy.
This is a historic wall of capital for the net zero transition in the world.
What matters now is action: investing that capital in our low carbon future.
To do this, investors must have as much clarity and confidence in the climate impact of their investments as they do in traditional financial measures of profit and loss.
Our third action is therefore to rewire the entire global financial system for Net Zero.
Better and more consistent climate data.
Sovereign Green Bonds.
Mandatory sustainability disclosures.
Good monitoring of climate risks.
Stricter global reporting standards.
All we have to deliver and I’m proud the UK is playing its part.
We have already made it mandatory for companies to disclose climate-related financial information.
With 35 other signatory countries to do the same.
Today I am announcing that the UK will go further and become the very first ‘financial center aligned with net zero’.
This means that we will move towards the obligation for companies to publish a clear and deliverable plan …
… Defining how they will decarbonise and move to Net Zero – with an independent working group to define what is required.
So: a renewed pledge of $ 100 billion per year in public funding;
Over $ 130 trillion in private capital awaiting deployment;
And a greener financial system, underway.
Six years ago, Paris had set itself the ambition.
Today in Glasgow we are providing the investment we need to realize this ambition.
Now I know when people hear about global finance it can seem distant and abstract.
But we’re not just talking about numbers on a page.
We are talking about making a tangible difference in people’s lives.
About cheap, reliable and clean electricity to power schools and hospitals in rural Africa.
About better coastal defenses in the Philippines and the Pacific Islands to protect people from storm surges.
Just about everyone, everywhere having fresher water to drink …
… Cleaner air to breathe…
… Better insulated houses in which to live.
This is the vision we ask you to commit to.
This is the opportunity we ask you to invest in.
And this is the work we ask you to start today.