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COP23 Resilience as a Business

Photo: NDF

How the private sector can turn climate risk into business and investment.

On November 10, NDF participated in “Climate Resilience as a Business”, an event organized in Bonn during the 23rd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the UN Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The event was organised by the Proadapt program at the IDB, in partnership with NDF, the Japanese government and Mitsubishi Morgan Stanley.

Pasi Hellman, NDF Managing Director, gave the introductory remarks to the event, which were followed by a panel discussion, moderated by Amal-Lee Amin (Chief, Climate Change and Sustainability Division, IDB). The panel was composed of Mari Yoshitaka (Chief Consultant of Clean Energy Finance Division, Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co.Ltd.), Barbara Buchner (Executive Director of Climate Finance Program, Climate Policy Initiative), Jay Koh (Founder and Chair of GARI, and Managing Director of the Lightsmith Group), and Nik Steinberg (Director Climate Analytics at Four Twenty Seven, Inc).

The panel discussion was an opportunity to bring together corporate stakeholders and private investors to discuss the pivotal role of the private sector in mainstreaming adaptation and driving the resilience agenda. The panel explored how to further develop the business ecosystem and support resilience solutions.

A general conclusion of the discussion was the need for increased and strengthened collaboration between all stakeholders, both private and public, in tackling the “adaptation gap” by providing adequate financing instruments (i.e. blended structures and investment vehicles) and supporting enterprises in developing innovative adaptation and resilience solutions. All panellists agreed that climate change is already having significant impacts on economies, both in developing and developed countries, and that these impacts and economic losses will be exacerbated in the future.

The private sector is the key in tackling these challenges. “It must be recognised that private sector tools already exist and are today ready to be replicated and scaled-up, which will be possible by ramping up adaptation investments,” said Jay Koh, of the Lightsmith Group. Many panellists and workshop participants lauded NDF’s leading role in bringing forward and in a concrete manner supporting the concept of climate resilience from a business perspective.

It was also recognised that the poorest and most vulnerable countries must be given special focus. “There is an ongoing paradigm change in how concessional funds are going to be used in tackling the adaptation gap, especially when we look at the poorest countries, where the business case of adaptation solutions is not as evident,” said Pasi Hellman, NDF’s Managing Director.

For more information on the Proadapt program, please visit www.proadapt.org.