"Major financial institutions have realized the unprecedented threat that climate change poses"

"Major financial institutions have realized the unprecedented threat that climate change poses"

The magnitude of the risks compels financial professionals to adopt a new framework of ethical reflexion between individual interest and the common good, observes the former banker Jerome Courcier in a forum at the "World".

Posted today at 09:57 Time to Play 6 min.

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"Many financial institutions today want to" green "investments and / or credits that appear in their balance sheet. "
"Many financial institutions today want to" green "investments and / or credits that appear in their balance sheet. »Ingram / Photononstop

Tribune. On 18 June, the European Commission published a proposal for a "sustainable business guide", to enable investors and businesses to identify sectors that generate environmental benefits, that is, that contribute significantly to the fight against pollution. against climate change without causing collateral damage. These sustainable activities are divided into three categories: those already compatible with a carbon neutrality target of 2050, those that could become carbon neutral, and those that contribute to the results of the other two categories.

Many financial institutions today want to "green" the investments and / or credits that appear in their balance sheet. Crédit Agricole has thus committed to reducing to zero the exposure of its thermal coal financing and investment portfolios by 2030 in European and OECD countries, by 2040 in China, and by 2050 in the rest of the world.

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To do this, the "green" bank has undertaken not to develop a commercial relationship with companies deriving more than 25% of their coal turnover, except with those who published or plan to publish before 2021 a plan for the withdrawal of thermal coal assets, and who want to finance renewable energy projects or greenhouse gas reduction projects. More generally, the bank has set up a Green Liquidity Factor ", that is to say, a mechanism internally improving the conditions for refinancing loans for sustainable activities.

Real awareness

Would international finance join the ranks of "fundamentalists" who, in the ecologist movement, oppose the "realists"? At first glance, but since the speech delivered in 2015 to Lloyds by Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of England, large institutions have realized the unprecedented threat that climate change poses to the global economy. On the financial side, some counterparties will see their value fall as a result of a steep transition to a low-carbon economy.

On the environmental front, many economic agents (individuals, companies, administrations) will suffer physical losses caused by the repetition of extreme events. On the social level, others will be subject to legal action, insofar as they will be held responsible for all or part of the damage caused. On June 15, major global investors in the Carbon Disclosure Project published a list of companies that do not provide enough information on their roles in climate, water conservation and deforestation.

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