EBRD – CGI to promote corporate climate governance

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By Vanora Bennett

FRANKFURT, Germany – The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Climate Governance Initiative (CGI) will work together to promote climate governance of companies, including training non-executive directors on climate-related risks and their implications for business to boost boards’ capacity to move towards a net-zero economy.

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by the two organisations establishes a framework of cooperation to support stakeholders in adopting an integrated, strategic approach for addressing climate change and enhancing corporate climate governance in accordance with international best practice.

This new partnership will enable the organisations to collaborate on joint projects and activities to instigate systemic changes towards sound corporate climate governance and better management of climate-related risks. This initiative would also unlock new business opportunities in economies where the EBRD operates.

“To respond effectively to the challenges of climate change, corporate boards have to enhance their knowledge of how climate risks could affect their companies, stakeholders, value chains and markets, and what steps to take to mitigate such risks,” said Harry Boyd-Carpenter, EBRD managing director, Climate Strategy and Delivery.

He added: “By raising awareness of climate-related risks and opportunities in the boardroom, non-executive directors can instigate a change process leading to the integration of climate considerations into the company’s strategic direction. We are pleased to partner up with the Climate Governance Initiative to promote the World Economic Forum’s Climate Governance Principles amongst existing and new clients.”

“Boards play a critical role in tackling climate change and now is the time to act. We are excited that the CGI is joining forces with EBRD, bringing together the skills, resources and reach needed to mobilise boards to take climate action. This partnership will enable an important new wave of climate champions who are ready to deliver the impact needed to accelerate the net-zero economy,” said Emily Farnworth, head of secretariat and governing board member at the Climate Governance Initiative, and co-director of the Centre for Climate Engagement.

“Around the world, boards are recognizing their critical role in mobilising the private sector to accelerate the net-zero transition, and are enhancing their capabilities to ensure long-term climate impact. We look forward to this collaboration between the EBRD and the CGI in support of this global community of non-executive directors and its role in addressing the climate challenge,” said Antonia Gawel, member of the executive committee, World Economic Forum.

CGI was established by the World Economic Forum to help boards and senior management meet the challenges of climate change. CGI promotes the adoption of the World Economic Forum’s Climate Governance Principles by mobilising, educating and equipping non-executive directors with the skills and knowledge necessary to address climate change at board level.

As well as leading to better governance, bringing more and deeper project-level engagement with clients, this partnership is expected to enhance the delivery of the EBRD’s Green Economy Transition (GET) approach, through which the multilateral development bank aims to make at least half its investments green by 2025. The EBRD is also implementing plans to align fully with the goals of the Paris Agreement on climate change by the end of 2022.

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