By Simon Smith
A comprehensive new report by The Aotearoa Circle’ s Sustainable Finance Forum looks at how New Zealand can reform its financial system to help deal with the climate crisis.
Auckland University of Technology academics Dr David Hall and Alec Tang have been on the technical working group for the past two years that has helped to shape the Sustainable Finance: Roadmap for Action 2020 and its recommendations.
“Climate finance is one of the most neglected, yet most important, drivers of the transition to a low-emissions economy,” said Dr Hall.
The roadmap is an initiative involving major banks, insurers and other financial sector players. It builds on an earlier report co-authored by Dr Hall, Climate Finance Landscape for Aotearoa New Zealand, which was launched at AUT in April 2017 by the Minister for Climate Change James Shaw.
That was New Zealand’s first report on domestic climate finance, and several recommendations have since been implemented, including the establishment of the $100 million Green Investment Finance Ltd, a publicly-backed green investment fund, and the adoption of the mandatory climate risk reporting and disclosure requirements for all major New Zealand businesses.
The new Roadmap for Action 2020 takes this to the next level, publishing a series of commitments by financial sector actors to achieve more sustainable outcomes through their activities.
“Collectively, we need to change the way investment and lending decisions are made, so that environmental, social and economic factors are integral and negative impacts, both immediately and over the long term, are avoided,” the report says.
Dr Hall said the Sustainable Finance Forum sought to achieve this through changing mindsets, transforming the financial system, and financing the transformation.
Republished from AUT News.