Sep 27, 2020 • 44M

Episode #8. Is climate-aligned finance the next big thing for decarbonizing finance?

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Denise Young
New Climate Capitalism is a podcast about change-makers working at the intersection of activism, finance and investment.
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Today’s guest is Paul Bodnar, Managing Director of the Rocky Mountain Institute.

We talk about their recently launched Centre for Climate-Aligned Finance, which is a promising new approach to decarbonizing the financial sector inspired by the shipping finance sector.

What’s very cool about talking to Paul is that he used to work in the Obama administration as a climate expert, and was part of the US team that worked on the negotiations that gave us the Paris Agreement. So we start out with a flashback to those suspenseful moments at the conference centre at Le Bourget back in 2015, and trace the ensuing developments in climate finance since then.

Progress in recent years has been underwhelming despite an abundance of approaches, standards and initiatives. So I was keen to learn more about this new approach pioneered by the shipping finance sector & known as the “Poseidon Principles” . Is this an emerging gold standard?

It’s hardly a surprise to find out this first global, sector-wide and self-governing climate alignment agreement among financial institutions has some elements of commonality with the Paris Agreement process, although its much narrower in scope because it pertains to one sector and its stakeholders.

It was a real treat to talk to someone who has such full-spectrum knowledge of the climate action process: Paul brings together the diplomacy, the politics and the finance of climate change into a clear and coherent whole.