PPCA co-chairs host roundtable discussion on climate risks and opportunities with finance leaders

PPCA co-chairs, Ministers Wilkinson and Trevelyan hosted a virtual roundtable with Mark Carney, UN Special Envoy for Climate Action and Finance, and finance leaders from North America and Europe today to discuss the importance of phasing-out market support for unabated coal power from climate risk and clean energy investment perspectives.

PPCA co-chairs host roundtable discussion on climate risks and opportunities with finance leaders
PPCA co-chairs host roundtable discussion on climate risks and opportunities with finance leaders

Following their discussion, Minister Wilkinson, U.K. Minister Trevelyan, and Mark Carney issued the following statements:

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Co-Chair of the Powering Past Coal Alliance.

The Right Honourable Anne-Marie Trevelyan, Minister of State (Minister for Business, Energy and Clean Growth), and Co-Chair of the Powering Past Coal Alliance

“Today we were joined by leaders from the North American and European financial sector to discuss how we can collectively ramp up our ambition to address the greatest challenge and economic opportunity of our time, climate change.

We are pleased that many of the largest players in the financial sector have recognized the need to account for climate risks and to invest in industries and companies that have strong, sustainable business models, especially the electricity sector.

The Powering Past Coal Alliance, co-founded by Canada and the U.K., is driving the phase-out of coal power emissions by working with governments and financial leaders to transition services and investments in coal-fired power and encourage investments in clean forms of energy. We call upon financial institutions to take steps to align their financial flows with Paris Agreement goals, and to this end, adopt the Alliance’s Finance Principles as an important step.

With 2020 tied for the hottest year on record, we must all take action to address climate change and help the nations of the world transition to clean electricity and build back better from COVID-19. Phasing out coal is essential for meeting our climate targets and putting the economy on a pathway towards net-zero emissions. For the good of our economies, our health and our planet, the time to accelerate our efforts is now as we head into the Powering Past Coal Alliance summit and the UN Climate Change meetings (COP 26) later this year.”

Mark Carney,  Finance Adviser to the Prime Minister for COP 26 and UN Special Envoy for Climate Action and Finance

“To meet the 1.5°C target, more than 75% of coal reserves will need to stay in the ground, while trillions of dollars of investments every year in cost-effective renewable energy – such as solar, wind and hydro power – will be needed to transform our energy systems. I welcome the work of the Powering Past Coal Alliance to support the financial sector's efforts to invest for the sustainable future that we all need and that future generations deserve."

Today’s closed-door discussion was a launch pad for a public session on the role that financial actors can play in supporting the coal-to-clean transition at the PPCA Global Summit on 2-4 March. The Summit will convene leaders in government, finance and other sectors to drive ambitious action on coal phase-out ahead of COP26. More information here.

Commenting on her new role as the PPCA co-chair, Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: 

“The fight against climate change is at a pivotal moment. The UK and the rest of the world has an opportunity to build back greener and transition to clean electricity by stopping the use of coal for power generation.  

“It is a privilege to co-chair the Powering Past Coal Alliance which is driving meaningful change and I look forward to working with other countries to help them make the transition to low carbon solutions.