Green Finance

The defining moment of COP26, environmental pushback on NFTs, Visa shows environmental impact of purchases

  • COP26 was a seminal moment in the emergence of green finance.
  • Discord users pushback on NFTs, Visa shows environmental impact of purchases, and more.
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The defining moment of COP26, environmental pushback on NFTs, Visa shows environmental impact of purchases

Tearsheet’s Green Finance newsletter is about the intersection of money and the environment. We’ll be in your inbox every other week, and share what we’re currently thinking about, and what’s been happening at three key areas in the intersection: corporate responsibility, blockchain, and green products and services.

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COP26 is now over, and it concluded with a few agreements and a lot of hopes for the following COP next year. The summit's outcome included commitments to halt deforestation, “phase down” coal power plants, and $130 trillion in private capital funding. Meanwhile, banks pledged to focus more on sustainable investments, but some remain skeptical on the progress actually achieved.

What happened at COP26? Follow the money.

green finance

The COP26 summit's main outcome document was The Glasgow Climate Pact, which calls on 197 countries to accelerate climate-friendly actions and report their progress on the green agenda at COP27, which is set to take place in Egypt in November 2022. 

One of the key focuses at the summit was the financial sector. 

Mark Carney, the UN Special Envoy for Climate Action and Finance at COP26, assembled the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero, whichagreed to devote $130 trillion in private capital funding to hit net zero emission targets by 2050 and report yearly on their lending practices.

  • Its members represent over 450 financial institutions from 45 countries.
  • From the US, banks that participated included Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Wells Fargo.
  • Activists argued that the pledges were insufficient and demanded more immediate climate action, especially given the large financial support the banking industry has offered to fossil-fuel industries

JPMorgan Chase was the world’s top banker of fossil fuels, lending $317 billion between 2016 - 2020. The next three top fossil fuel financiers were also US banks, namely Citi, Wells Fargo and Bank of America, according to a report

Even if COP26 didn’t provide the solutions that green finance enthusiasts hoped for, it did push forward the climate agenda in the financial space. The need for more transparent banking and enhanced disclosures is now being addressed, even if through new alliances or promises. 

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What we're reading

Corporate responsibility

European financial platform Tink forges green finance partnership with Sustainability as a Service provider ecolytic (Finextra)

The uses and abuses of green finance (The Economist)

John Kerry: Companies that quickly embrace green tech will clean up (Financial Times)

Green finance does little to prevent global warming, report says (Bloomberg Law)

Blockchain

Top five environmentally sustainable cryptocurrencies to invest in for 2022 (CoinTelegraph)

Discord drops Ethereum and NFT integration plans after backlash from users citing environmental costs (CoinTelegraph)

How crypto-owning climate activists balance saving the planet with supporting energy-hungry Bitcoin mines (Fortune)

Cambridge University to build carbon credit marketplace on blockchain (CoinDesk)

Green products and services

Visa Eco Benefits allows consumers to see environmental impact of purchases (PYMNTS)

Saving the planet: how green bonds can help younger people invest in the future (The Guardian)

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