TORONTO—The global demand for cleaner economic growth is opening up tens of trillions of dollars of opportunity around the world—giving Canadian developers of clean solutions access to new markets and creating good jobs for Canada’s middle class. The federal government is investing in climate action and clean competitiveness to ensure Canadians can participate in and prosper from these opportunities, today and in the decades ahead.
Canada’s financial sector has an important role to play in unlocking the potential of clean growth in Canada. That was the focus of a round table discussion, today, on sustainable finance, with the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, and Canadian business leaders. The round table was hosted by the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Catherine McKenna, and the Minister of Finance, Bill Morneau. Accelerating action to support sustainable finance is an important part of Canada’s G7 presidency.
“We know that the environment and the economy go hand in hand. Around the world, leading financial markets are paying more and more attention to climate change,” said Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change. “Here in Canada, investors want quality information to help manage the risks of climate change and profit from the opportunities that clean growth creates. Better climate information is good news for investors, companies, and Canadians.”
At the round table, representatives of Canada’s business and financial sectors—including banks, pension funds, insurers, and the energy sector—discussed what Canada needs to do to avoid missing out on the opportunities associated with clean growth as well as the climate-related risks—such as more intense forest fires, storms, and floods—that could affect their operations and financial outlook.
“Markets need the right information to manage the transition to a low-carbon economy. At last year’s G20, the private-sector-led TCFD presented the framework for enhanced climate disclosures, and now providers of capital controlling over $80 trillion of assets are supporting its implementation,” said Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England and Chair of the Financial Stability Board. “With climate risks and opportunities entering the mainstream of capital markets, I am heartened to see Canada moving forward in the creation of an expert panel on sustainable finance.”
The ministers announced the creation of the Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance, to be chaired by Tiff Macklem, Dean of the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management and former Senior Deputy Governor of the Bank of Canada. The Expert Panel will consult members of the business community about the opportunities associated with sustainable finance. The Expert Panel will also explore the opportunities and challenges for companies facing voluntary standards for corporate disclosure of the financial risks associated with climate change.
The Expert Panel builds on the work of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCDF), led by Michael Bloomberg, established by the Financial Stability Board, and chaired by Governor Carney. The Task Force is recognized worldwide for its ground-breaking work to develop voluntary recommendations on climate-related information that companies can disclose to help investors, lenders, and others make sound financial decisions.
Other members of the Expert Panel are: Andy Chisholm, member of the Board of Directors of the Royal Bank of Canada; Kim Thomassin, Executive Vice-President, Legal Affairs and Secretariat, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, and; Barbara Zvan, Chief Risk and Strategy Officer, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.
The four panel members will complete their work and provide recommendations to the federal government by the fall of 2018.