There is a shrinking window of opportunity to address the climate crisis. Average global temperature is currently estimated to be 1.1°C above pre-industrial times. Based on existing trends, the world could cross the 1.5°C threshold within the next two decades and 2°C threshold early during the second half of the century. Limiting global warming to 1.5°C is still narrowly possible and will be determined by the investment decisions we make over the next decade. Finance – public and private - is critical to address the urgency, ambition and scale of response needed to help developing countries accelerate the transition to low emissions climate resilient pathways. The faster the transition, the lower are the climate risks and the higher are the synergies between climate action and other sustainable development goals. A rapid transition will require significantly more investment, investment in a different set of assets, and investment that addresses distributional trade-offs. The COVID-19 pandemic has further increased the challenge.
Every April 22nd, Earth Day highlights the importance of people and planet around the world. This year, the upcoming Climate Leaders’ Summit organized by the United States (US) administration and the US Climate Week are important opportunities to highlight the role of climate finance in promoting economic and social benefits, catalyzing innovation and driving transformative climate action. It was be one of the key milestones in the lead-up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP26 in November.
This virtual round table discussed the opportunities and challenges of investing in climate action in developing countries. It highlighted the role of GCF in supporting partners to catalyze innovation and leverage blended finance mechanisms to accelerate the transition to low emissions climate resilient pathways. Blended finance aims to use public funds to share risk and crowd in private investment through co-financing pioneer investments in new markets, technologies and practices. The roundtable notably demonstrated the catalytic role that public finance can play in mobilizing both public and private resources to finance the net-zero transition in developing countries while building resilience to avoid the catastrophic impacts of climate change.
Objectives of the event:
- To signal new trends, challenges and opportunities for blended finance investments in climate action in developing countries in the context of COVID-19.
- To demonstrate how GCF is enabling partners to mobilize funds at scale for transformative investments in developing countries.
To share insights on the way forward to reinforce momentum and impact in scaling up collaboration to help developing countries raise and realise ambitions in the lead-up to COP26.
Video statement: John Kerry, Special Presidential Envoy for Climate
Moderator: Carlos Curbelo, former U.S. representative for Florida's 26th congressional district
- Yannick Glemarec, Executive Director, Green Climate Fund
- Craig Cogut, Chairman / CEO / Founder, Pegasus Capital Advisors
- Martin Durbin, Senior Vice President, Policy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
- Erika Lennon, Senior Attorney in the Climate and Energy Program at the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL)
- Dante Mossi, Executive President of Central American Bank for Economic Integration (CABEI)
- Jacqueline Novogratz, CEO, Acumen
- M. Sanjayan, CEO of Conservation International
They were joined by other industry leaders from finance, business and civil society.