The new centres in Leeds and London will equip banks with the latest environmental and scientific intelligence to help companies of all sizes “anticipate, adapt and gear up for the risks posed by climate change”
The UK government is set to invest £10m ($13.9m) into creating green finance research centres as part of the efforts to clean up the global economy.
The new UK Centre for Greening Finance and Investment will begin in April 2021, with physical hubs in the cities of Leeds and London opening a matter of months later.
The government said the research centres will provide “world-class data and analytics” to financial institutions and services such as banks, lenders, investors and insurers around the world to “better support their investment and business decisions by considering the impact on the environment and climate change”.
Energy and clean growth minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: “Climate change is the biggest issue that we need to tackle to protect our planet for our children and grandchildren.
“While the government has invested billions of pounds so we can end the UK’s contribution to climate change, we will not reach our net-zero target without mobilising private capital and unleashing the power of the free market.”
UK green finance research centres latest commitment in plans to “build back greener”
Trevelyan believes the research centres, which mark the latest commitment in Britain’s plans to “build back greener”, will encourage financial services to “turn the tide of their investments” and “focus on sectors and companies that have a smaller environmental footprint”.
She added that doing so will help support industries and businesses to develop clean green innovations, creating thousands of jobs across the country.
The new centres will equip banks with the latest environmental and scientific intelligence to help companies of all sizes “anticipate, adapt and gear up for the risks posed by climate change”, according to the government.
It said the research will help create new world-leading products and services that tackle climate change, such as cutting-edge technologies that measure severe storms and flood risks for property investors and tools that can improve data on industrial pollution linked to investment portfolios.
The new green finance hubs are also aiming to attract and develop new green finance talent from around the world to the UK’s major cities.
The government claims this will unlock brand-new opportunities for Britain to “lead internationally in greening global finance”, positioning Leeds and London as global centres for green finance while also protecting the UK economy and society from climate and environmental risks such as extreme weather events, flooding, major biodiversity loss and water crises.
It is estimated that successfully reducing the impacts of climate change and adapting to life in a changing climate will deliver multi-trillion pounds of additional private sector investment each year.
The government said the new centres will help divert investment away from “unsustainable activities such as deforestation and fossil fuels”, and towards low-carbon sectors, creating green jobs, building industries of the future, and ensuring the climate and environment are “at the heart of UK financial decision making”.