Carbon Tracker at the World Economic Forum 2014

Carbon Tracker sent a team consisting of Jeremy Leggett, our chairman, Anthony Hobley, our CEO, and Mark Campanale, our founding director, to Davos at the end of last month. With shareholders applying pressure on oil and gas companies over capital spending, more institutions selling out of coal and renewable energy reaching a ‘transformational moment’ (Goldman Sachs), our team had much ammunition to help spread the word on carbon asset stranding risk to the World Economic Forum.

Watch the video below featuring interviews with Jo Confino of the Guardian, Katherine Garrett-Cox from the Alliance Trust, the CTI team and UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres revealing ‘the best graph she has absolutely ever seen‘.

Private roundtable on carbon asset stranding risk

The World Economic Forum hosted a private roundtable on asset stranding, opened with comments from Carbon Tracker’s Chairman Jeremy Leggett and Rick Samans from the Carbon Standards Disclosure Board (CDSB). The event was well attended by individuals from investment banks, ratings agencies, central banks and investor groups. Read the 4-page handout prepared for the event by Carbon Tracker below.

Chaired by Lord Adair Turner, the meeting provided a crucial opportunity for CTI to connect with the highest-level individuals at the heart of carbon asset stranding risk and continue building momentum on the issue.

Cautious optimism
With the likes of the Carbon Disclosure Project, The Climate Group and CERES also in attendance, Jeremy Leggett was justifiably ‘cautiously optimistic’ about increasing awareness of climate risk when speaking to Jo Confino of the Guardian(below). Listen to his account of the reception the stranded assets thesis and the work of Carbon Tracker received in Davos and how he sees its progress towards Paris 2015.

The day before, a speech from World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, suggested we were being successful in doing this:

‘Financial regulators need to lead, as well. Sooner rather than later, they must address the systemic risk associated with carbon-intensive activities in their economies, made clear, of course, by price signals. Start now by enforcing disclosure of climate risk and requiring companies and financial institutions to access their exposure to climate-related impacts.’

The full speech can be found here.

Achim Steiner, executive director of UNEP, followed a similar line:

‘Do our financial regulators need to start thinking about protecting them [investments] and us from the ‘too big to fail syndrome’? The accountants, we heard, won’t address this issue as climate is not a balance sheet issue. So track the carbon exposure of your investment and don’t be misled by audited accounts which may be in the black when in reality your company or investment, five to 10 years down the line, may be sitting on ‘stranded assets’.’