What is climate change and why is it important to the financial sector? Many people tend to treat extreme weather, heat waves, the rise of renewable energy, and melting ice caps as independent unrelated events. However, they are part of the larger phenomena of climate change and its responses. We therefore must start with a thorough understanding of what climate change really is. Not understanding climate change and its implications may mean that you fail to spot new trends that will impact your clients and the markets they operate in.
Climate change is emerging as a major corporate and financial issue. Climate change is not a ‘future problem’ anymore. Global climate change has already had observable effects on the environment. Effects that scientists had predicted in the past would result from global climate change are now occurring: loss of sea ice, accelerated sea level rise and longer, more intense heat waves.
Climate change creates risks in four different ways: regulatory risks (such as new
legislation or carbon pricing), physical risks (such as extreme weather events or loss of productivity), technological risks (such as electric vehicles or renewable energy), and
social risk (such as the anti-coal coalition). These risks extend to supply chains (upstream) as well as market changes (downstream).
Investors and regulators, such as central banks, are taking notice. They believe that climate change presents a new systemic risk that is not yet fully understood. They are therefore pressing for more transparency through the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). Financial institutions therefore must develop an understanding of what climate change means to them, which actions they can take, and how they can report on their activities.
Participants will learn about climate trends, current policy responses, how climate change impacts portfolios, how to close the data gap, work through case studies, learn how to quantify climate risk, and apply the Climate Risk Sensitivity/Impact Matrix to your own institution.
• Understanding of the “impact chains” of climate change on individual assets, portfolios and markets
• Understand the link between climate impacts and financial performance
• Gain insight on current policy responses and develop scenarios for future responses
• Learn how to compare different TCFD reports from similar companies in the same sector
• Learn how to engage with your clients on climate risk
Gerhard’s career in climate finance spanned both the public and private sector, having worked in consulting in Washington DC, environmental markets on Wall Street, and for the Dutch government (Netherlands Enterprise Agency) to implement the Kyoto Protocol. In 2005 he set up the climate finance desk at ABN AMRO Bank and positioned the bank as one of the first global banks in the carbon market. In 2010 he joined Rabobank International to develop an electronic trading platform for environmental commodities such as carbon credits and renewable energy certificates. In 2010 he switched back to the public sector and joined a leading non-profit (IUCN) in the Netherlands.
At IUCN he advised the Netherlands government on developing financial instruments to attract private sector climate finance.
He co-founded Climate Risk Services (CRS) together with a non-profit, Climate Adaptation Services (a spin-out from the Dutch government). CRS combines climate data, financial knowledge and sector expertise to develop climate risk services to a range of public and private sector
organisations. Some of their financial sector clients include leading banks, institutional investors and Sovereign Wealth Funds. Gerhard completed his MBA at Oxford in 2018 with distinction. He studied environmental economics and international affairs at Columbia University in New York, and Public Policy at the University of Amsterdam.