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Engaging private sector capital at scale in financing low carbon infrastructures in developing countries

This paper examines the possibilities for scaling up financing for low- carbon infrastructure and energy efficiency, especially in developing countries such as India and China.

The report contains ten key points, these include:

  • to have any chance to peak global emissions in the next decade and be on a 2oC path, in the next ten years, an investment of over $2 trillion in new zero- and low-carbon energy infrastructure and another over $2 trillion in energy efficiency, is needed. Much of this needs to be in developing countries
  • if there is one common fact to proposed investments in either “carbon heavy” or “carbon light” projects, it is that to proceed, they must get financed. Trillions of dollars do exist in the finance and investment sector and are routinely invested—just not where they are needed
  • the workings of capital markets can be likened to an “ecosystem.” Any plan to radically and rapidly change the nature of decisions will be more likely to succeed if it is able to use the regular processes of this well-tried ecosystem—its language, disciplines and relationships—rather than attempt to make radical changes to the system itself
  • the climate change policy community needs to better understand how risk has such an important influence on what gets invested in and what doesn’t
  • there are hopeful examples of what is needed that are beginning to emerge – recent issues of Green Bonds have proven a means to raise low cost-of-capital debt to finance green projects and programmes