Last week, ensconced behind the ornate wood trim molding of the New York Stock Exchange’s 7th floor, luminaries in the realm of climate finance convened for the ICE Climate and Capital Conference, which was in partnership by FINTECH.TV, Accenture and Gitterman Asset Management.
The “AIR” We Should Breathe
This year’s agenda was woven around three pillars aptly acronymed “AIR”: Adaptation, Innovation, and Regulation.
These are the cornerstones that will define the response to the multifaceted challenges ahead: the tangible threats of climate change, impending biodiversity losses, mounting human migrations, and the maelstrom of ever-shifting regulatory edicts.
Jeff Gitterman of Gitterman Asset Management set the stage, unveiling a series of insightful panels and dialogues with leading figures.
The objective was singular and urgent: furnishing attendees with strategies not only to mitigate risk but also to spur innovations. Innovations geared toward reducing emissions and buttressing the world’s most vulnerable against the advancing climate menace.
From the array of expert speakers, three stood out, each illuminating a facet of the way forward.
Lisa Larroque Alexander of SEMPRA weighed in on the financing aspect.
As one of the most prodigious issuers of sustainable debt, SEMPRA feels the pulse of capital costs. Alexander anticipates methane mitigation to be a cornerstone discussion at the upcoming COP28 conference.
She evocatively quoted Churchill, “We’ve run out of money, now it’s time to think.” This crystallizes the drive to strategize when resources dwindle.
She also expressed keen interest and foreshadowing in how carbon credits might be used post the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) – a critical juncture that will mold our financial strategies.
- With the International Energy Agency forecasting a staggering $10 trillion for essential grid enhancements in the forthcoming years, the roadmap is unmistakable: innovate or stagnate.
Hanh Nguyen of OCI Global articulated her vision for a recalibrated carbon economy. She envisions the Carbon Model Adjustment Mechanism emerging as a pivotal catalyst, much like the EU’s carbon tax.
Her firm belief in the hydrogen economy’s potential resonated.
- According to OCI, green methanol will surge until 2030, post which e-ammonia, with its pristine zero-emission credentials, will likely reign supreme by 2050.
Lastly, Lesley Biddle, a senior advisor at the U.S. Department of Energy, gave a primer on the tools at the U.S. DoE’s disposal to drive decarbonization.
The Infrastructure Bill, with its potent mix of debt and equity, alongside the Inflation Reduction Act’s provisions of credits and grants, earmarks an impressive $90 billion for deployment by summer 2024. Biddle hinted at a brisker rollout of “Hydrogen Hubs” and underscored the need to augment storage for hydrogen and capture.
The Triad For Fighting Climate Change
As the curtain fell on this year’s ICE Climate and Capital Conference, the takeaway was unequivocal. The triad of Adaptation, Innovation, and Regulation will not only guide but also drive our responses toward encroaching climate adversities. And there is A LOT of money available to companies and entrepreneurs willing to take on and solve these challenges.
It’s not just about grappling with known demons but also about anticipating the unknown, sculpting strategies in real-time, and ensuring a world where vulnerabilities are minimized and resilience is the watchword.
To watch the conference, click here: https://www.ice.com/events/virtual/climate-and-capital-conference-2023