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UNEP FI Annual General Meeting - Public sessions

12-13 October 2015 | Paris, France

UNEP FI on 12-13 October 2015 held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) at Amundi in Paris. The recurring theme of the two-day proceedings was on the changing context for sustainable finance, with a focus on risks and impacts - The increasing diversity and technical specialisation in ESG risks (e.g. water risk tools in corporate bonds and decarbonisation of investment portfolios) and the strategic responses need to the vital challenges such as climate change and energy efficiency.

In addition to the UNEP FI members-only sessions which exercise the essential aspect of the governance of the UNEP FI partnership, the 2015 AGM also provided opportunities for UNEP FI to outreach to its wider stakeholders by including both high-level and practical public sessions which displayed the diversity and depth of sustainable finance today.

The highlight was an open dialogue between leaders in the UN and financial institutions on the role of the finance sector in attaining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and achieving positive outcomes from COP21 in Paris in December. Achim Steiner, UN Under-Secretary-General and UNEP Executive Director and Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, opened this session with a highly engaging discussion. This was followed by a rousing speech from Saker Nusseibeh, the CEO of Hermes, to remind the audience that the real asset owner is the pensioner who wants to retire in an environment worth retiring in. Séverin Cabannes, Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Société Générale, together with Namita Vikas, Chief Sustainability Officer of Yes Bank, launched the UNEP FI Positive Impact Manifesto, a roadmap for driving positive impact in finance. Nick Robins, co-director of the UNEP Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System presented the Financial System We Need report. David Pitt Watson, Co-chair of UNEP FI, then moderated a highly engaging panel comprised of Mats Andersson, CEO, AP4, Paul Simons, Deputy Executive Director, International Energy Agency (IEA), Christian Thimann, Member of the Executive Committee and Group Head of Strategy & Public Affairs, AXA and Jean Boissinot, Head of Banking and Financial Sector Analysis Division, Finance Department, Direction Générale du Trésor.

In addition, a public breakfast meeting on cutting-edge ESG tools was commended by many participants as an immensely efficient learning opportunity to gain quick insight into the newest developments in this fast moving space.

The AGM reaffirmed the existing and long-standing partnership between the UN and the finance sector as a critical driving force in unlocking private finance towards sustainable economy. This message was echoed outside of the AGM at the same time as a CHF 4.2 Million pledge was made by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) also on 12 October 2015 in Bern towards the UNEP FI’s Natural Capital Declaration (NCD) to fast track the integration of natural capital issues in the finance sector.


Environmental and Social Risk Management Tools for Financial Institutions

Monday, 12 October 2015, 8:30-10:00 | Public Breakfast Meeting

This session showcases the tools, methodologies and frameworks developed by UNEP FI for financial institutions to better manage emerging environmental and social risks.

Detailed agenda

Audio recording (1 hour 35 minutes)

  • Carbon asset risk: assessment and management approaches
    Presenters: Marisa Buchanan, Vice President, Sustainable Finance, JPMorgan Chase & Co.
  • Water scarcity risk: Corporate bond tool and equity tool
    Presenters: Simone Dettling, GIZ and Yiannis Bartzilas, Bloomberg
  • Land use risk: Deforestation Value at Risk tool
    Presenter: Iain Henderson, UNEP FI REDD+ and Sustainable Land Use Coordinator
  • Natural disaster & climate risk: UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) Global Risk Map
    Presenter: Butch Bacani, UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) Coordinator
  • Human Rights risk: basic human rights risk management in banking tool
    Presenter: Philippa Birtwell, Head of Reputation Risk Management, Barclays PLC

Q&A:

  • What is the value of concrete tools developed in partnership with UNEP FI and the financial sector? If these tools are valuable why is the finance sector not developing them on their own?
  • How can these tools be mainstreamed across the finance sector?
  • What is the future for tool development at UNEP FI? Specific tools for specific purpose; Portfolio tools?

Moderator: Eric Usher, Acting Head, UNEP Finance Initiative
MC: Hugh Wheelan, Managing Editor, Responsible Investor Magazine


UNEP FI Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI) Market Event

Tuesday, 13 October 2015, 09:00 - 12:30

Detailed agenda

Audio recording (2 hours 30 minutes)

  • Overview of the PSI Initiative and its activities
  • Turning the PSI into practice: Perspectives from insurers and reinsurers
  • The French Insurance Association (AFA): Activities in support of the 2015 UN Climate Change Conference
  • Briefing on the forthcoming UN Global Climate Resilience Initiative


Creating Financial Sector Momentum Towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) & COP21 - A High-Level Session

Tuesday, 13 October 2015, 13:30-17:30

This meeting explores the role, potential and needs of the financial system in meeting the SDGs and climate change ambitions. It is being held in partnership with the Responsible Investor magazine, and is hosted by Amundi.

Detailed agenda

Audio recording (3 hours 8 minutes)

Part 1: Coming out from the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreement

Opening Speaker

  • Achim Steiner, UNEP Executive Director and Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations - (via live video link)

Financial system-level perspectives

  • Saker Nusseibeh, CEO, Hermes Investment Management
  • Séverin Cabannes, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Société Générale (video address)

Findings from the UNEP Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System

  • Nick Robins, Co-Director, UNEP Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System

Part 2: Going into COP21

  • Why do financial institutions need effective public action on climate change, including a successful COP21 and beyond?
  • What are the policy and regulatory frameworks required for determined climate action?
  • What’s the existing financial sector leadership? Why is it important and what impact has it delivered?

Opening Message

  • Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary, UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (via live video link)

UNEP FI response

  • Karsten Löffler, Managing Director, Allianz Climate Solutions and Chair of UNEP FI’s Climate Change Advisory Group (CCAG)

High-level Panelists

  • Mats Andersson, CEO, AP4
  • Paul Simons, Deputy Executive Director, International Energy Agency (IEA)
  • Namita Vikas, Chief Sustainability Officer, Yes Bank
  • Christian Thimann, Member of the Executive Committee and Group Head of Strategy & Public Affairs, AXA
  • Jean Boissinot, Head of Banking and Financial Sector Analysis Division, Finance Department, Direction Générale du Trésor

Moderator: David Pitt-Watson, UNEP FI Global Steering Committee Co-Chair
MC: Hugh Wheelan, Managing Editor, Responsible Investor Magazine