The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) aims to fully align its activities with the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change mitigation, adaptation and finance within the next 20 months.
“Our proposal is that by the beginning of 2023, everything we do will be aligned with the Paris Agreement,” EBRD President Odile Renaud-Basso said in a keynote speech marking the 30th anniversary of the Bank’s establishment.
“This would be a landmark step in our approach, and we will further support all the economies in which we invest in their low-carbon transition,” the President said.
Under its current strategy, the EBRD has committed to dedicating most of its investments to support the transition to a green economy by 2025. Alignment with the Paris Agreement would commit the Bank to only making investments consistent with the goals of the 2030 Agenda, namely, holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit that increase to 1.5°C.
“We are putting our full weight behind the net-zero transition”, President Renaud-Basso emphasised.
She also underscored that combatting climate change was both an urgent and long-term effort, with different solutions required for each country.
“Thirty years ago, our countries of operations faced the challenge of transitioning from a command economy to a market economy,” she said. “In the coming 30 years, they face the huge challenge of transitioning from an economic model overwhelmingly reliant on hydrocarbons to one of net-zero emissions. We recognise that each country will have a different path in that transition, but our goal is to support them every step of the way.”
One of the major challenges for governments today is to raise the amount of money going to climate finance from billions to the trillions the low-carbon transition requires. The EBRD’s focus on mobilising the private sector gives the Bank a unique role to play in making this happen.