At a time when extreme weather events are coming with increasing frequency—and an increased price tag for clean-up—cash-strapped governments are seeking new solutions to build climate resilience. A new World Economic Forum Report offers some hope. The Green Investment Report: The Ways and Means to Unlock Private Finance for Green Growth finds that approximately US$ 34 billion in additional public funding is needed to stablise global temperatures at an acceptable level—less than the US$ 50 billion recently approved by the United States Congress for rebuilding resilience after Hurricane Sandy. By increasing climate-related public funding from its current level of US$ 96 billion to around US$ 130 billion, it could mobilise private capital in the range of US$ 570 billion. This would address the US$ 700 billion in investment that the Report finds is required to put the world on a climate-resilient path towards green growth.
The report highlights that governments need to strategically target their public finance to attract private capital into green investment through measures such as guarantees, insurance products and incentives, combined with the right policy support. It includes examples where governments and public financing agencies have successfully mobilised significant amounts of private investment for clean energy, water and agricultural investment. It concludes with a series of recommendations for investors and governments to scale up these successes to close the green investment gap.