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Financial industry must urgently step up on climate change

The financial industry needs to step up “and now” with “unprecedented levels of cooperation” to tackle the climate change crisis, affirms the CEO and founder of one of the world’s largest independent financial services organisations.

The urgent call for industry-wide action from deVere Group’s Nigel Green comes as all eyes turn to Glasgow as world leaders gather in Scotland for the COP26 summit starting this week.  The event is expected to bring between 20,000 and 25,000 attendees alongside world leaders and business chiefs.

The goal of COP26 is to address the climate crisis, following up on the last event of this kind since 2019. It comes just a few months after the UN’s IPCC Report that described global warming as a “code red for humanity.”

Mr Green said: “Climate change is the greatest risk multiplier to our planet, to our communities, and to our way of life.

“Failing to understand the magnitude of it now is going to have catastrophic, irreversible consequences later.

“Joined-up planning followed by urgent action is essential.  But this will not only take political and social will. It will take trillions of dollars.”

He continues: “The world of international finance needs to step up – and now.

“There needs to be unprecedented levels of cooperation between financial advisories, insurance firms, banks, wealth and asset managers, investment companies, fintech groups, banks, auditors, amongst others, to help unlock and mobilise the trillions of dollars of private finance that is urgently required.

“Without this cooperation, the level of finance will not be available, nor at the pace necessary, to halt the worst effects of human-created global warming.”

Last week, deVere Group pledged to position $2bn of assets under advisement into environmental, social and governance (ESG) investments within five years.

The Group is also one of 18 founding signatories of the UN-backed Net Zero initiative, the international alliance of powerhouse global finance companies that will help accelerate the transition to a net zero financial system. Its membership means it is committed to “aligning all relevant products and services to achieve net zero greenhouse gases by 2050 and to set meaningful interim targets for 2025.”

The organisation has also confirmed that it “aims to significantly speed-up its own meeting of these Science Based Targets to reduce operational emissions in line with limiting global temperature rises to 1.5 degrees Centigrade.”

Mr Green concludes: “COP26 is an opportunity for our planet that cannot afford to be squandered.

“To date, there have been decades of inaction from political leaders. Therefore, it is critical that the business community acts and ushers in an era of real action before it’s too late.

“COP 26 must act as a catalyst for the financial industry to do what needs to be done to support the transition to Net Zero.  This means putting the environment at the heart of all professional decision-making.”

 

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