The climate clock was ticking loudly in 2021, with every region of the globe impacted by climate change.

At UNEP FI, we saw increasing action from the finance sector. Commitments to finance a net-zero economy were made by financial institutions around the world. UNEP FI’s membership continued to grow, reaching more than 400 financial institutions and over 150 supporting institutions. A raft of UNEP FI publications, guidance and new initiatives to foster leadership amongst financial institutions were launched, providing the direction, ambition and tools to enable the finance industry to align its activities with the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Banking and insurance members put into practice the key industry frameworks developed by UNEP FI, while our secretariat grew to offer more support to members and expand initiatives in the areas of nature and climate, while scaling up work on the circular economy and pollution.

It is clear to those of us working in the sustainable finance arena that private sector action on delivering a sustainable planet is more important than ever and that policymakers around the globe need to support this action for a rapid transition to a sustainable global economy.

Read on for a summary of the many projects and initiatives that saw UNEP FI’s members stepping up action to deliver a more sustainable and resilient future economy and build more inclusive, prosperous communities around the world.