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Speeding up and scaling up finance into clean energy and energy efficiency, greening infrastructure, sustaining ecosystems like forests and coral reefs and enabling countries and communities to adapt is essential to staying below 2C degrees. Check out what's happening and how to benefit.

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At the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris, the UN’s Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Cities and Climate Change Michael Bloomberg announced a new industry-led disclosure task force on climate-related financial risks under his chairmanship.

The “Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures”, established by the Financial Stability Board, will develop voluntary, consistent climate-related financial risk disclosures for use by companies in providing information to lenders, insurers, investors and other stakeholders.

The task force is being constituted at the request of G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors.

Speaking about his role, Michael R. Bloomberg said:

It’s critical that industries and investors understand the risks posed by climate change, but currently there is too little transparency about those risks.

The Bank of England’s Governor Mark Carney was one of the initiators of the task force. In Paris, Mark Carney said that the national climate action plans (“Intended Nationally Determined Contributions” or "INDCs")  submitted to the UN ahead of the Paris universal agreement would have major repercussions for businesses, and that a maximum of information was crucial for them to deal with the challenge of climate change and to capitalize on the opportunities of climate action.

For the European Union alone, that means a 1.6% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions every year. Companies need to ask themselves – ‘what does that mean for me? If the strategy is to get to net zero emissions, what is my plan?’

Michael Bloomberg has already been raising awareness of businesses in the US for climate-related risk through the Risky Business initiative he co-founded. As the former mayor of New York, he also likes to draw attention to the many advantages of environmental regulation at municipal and national level:

“For people who say climate action is bad for business, I say that New York City has the highest growth rate and the highest employment rate in the United States. And the net number of jobs in the United States because of environmental regulation has gone up, not down.”

Mark Carney said that a vocal and involved public was key to accelerate the transition to low carbon and that investors will need to take into account rules, regulations and societal pressures.

Mike Bloomberg added that the younger generation were now empowered to help shape the shift to low carbon and resilience, and that this had for example enabled the fossil fuel divestment movement to take hold on US campuses.

Technology now allows people to talk two ways, and that is having an impact on the way decisions are being made.

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