(Image: Private Media)

Topic three at COP26 in Glasgow is “mobilising finance.” Financial markets will play a key role in decarbonising the global economy, so this is an important topic.

According to the conference organisers, this means “developed countries must make good on their promise to mobilise at least $100 billion in climate finance per year by 2020”. Presumably this hasn’t been updated since the conference got pushed back a year, so perhaps they mean 2021. In any case, “soon” seems to be the point.

Finance is mobilising us

We’ll get to “mobilising finance”, but the first thing to note is that finance seems to be mobilising us. A few weeks ago, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg observed that Australia is already being punished by global capital markets for our status (deserved, I think; underserved, he argued) as a climate recalcitrant. Frydenberg went on to point out that “reduced access to these capital markets would increase borrowing costs, impacting everything from interest rates on home loans and small business loans to the financial viability of large-scale infrastructure projects”.