Leading financial firms commit to improved transparency on the risks of climate change

24 September 2019

New York, 24 September 2019.  The Global Commission on Adaption estimates over $7 trillion of climate change-related damages over the next ten years. To respond to these challenges, 5 leading banks and investors are committing today to disclose risks and opportunities for their portfolios from the impacts of climate change by 2021.

Global financial institutions have clients and portfolios that cover all sectors of the economy and can therefore have a powerful influence on the way that investments are made and projects are financed. Responding to climate change impacts requires a systemic, risk-based approach to decision making. The recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosure (TCFD) provide a framework for this, but uptake has been voluntary and rather piecemeal.

The Climate Resilience Risks and Opportunities Coalition (ClimateRROC) brings together Standard Chartered Bank, Rabobank, YES Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Rockefeller Asset Management who commit to disclose physical risks and opportunities from 2021, with the support of UNEP FI and the Global Center on Adaptation. This leadership group will also build support for public policies to encourage climate-related physical risk disclosure across the financial sector, as well as engaging with other financial firms to ensure that a critical mass of institutions commits to disclosure by 2021.

This initiative allows banks, investors and insurers to build on the technical developments of UNEP FI’s TCFD pilots through leadership, visibility and engagement with governments and regulators on climate resilience and adaptation.

“In 2016, UN Environment Programme’s Adaptation Gap Report identified the wide and increasing gap for financing adaptation investments. Climate change is affecting us now, particularly the poorest and most vulnerable, and will only become worse. It is imperative that the finance sector identifies market vulnerabilities and manages climate risks as we adapt to a warmer world. This is why UNEP FI is proud to partner with leading financial institutions to identify, measure and report on physical climate risk, to signal the importance of building finance sector resilience.”
Eric Usher, head of UNEP FI

“Measurability of the impact of climate on businesses and the financial sector is a very special and important challenge. As a Dutch bank, we are committed to transparency and we strive to contribute to making climate risk measurable. Our early participation in the UNEP FI TCFD working group expresses how important transparency and measurability of climate impact are for Rabobank. We are happy for the opportunity to take the lead again by joining the new Climate Resilience Risks and Opportunities Coalition.”
Wiebe Draijer, chairman of Rabobank’s Executive Board

“As climate change increasingly impacts economies and financial markets, it is prudent for investors to assess the risk and return ramifications to their portfolios and constructively engage with companies and policymakers to create long-term shareholder value. Our work with UNEP FI demonstrates our commitment to enhancing our investment process and delivering value for our clients. We are proud to take a leading role in the Climate Resilience Risks and Opportunities Coalition.”
David P. Harris, President of Rockefeller Asset Management

To find out more about the Climate Resilience Risks and Opportunities Coalition, please visit UNEP FI’s website on climate change adaptation here.

For more information, please contact:
Remco Fischer (kai.fischer@un.org)
Paul Smith (paul.smith@un.org)

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