Goldman Sachs joins the Center for Climate-Aligned Finance

By Georgia Wilson
Goldman Sachs joins the Centre for Climate-Aligned Finance alongside Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase & Rocky Mountain Instit...

Following the launch of Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) Center for Climate-Aligned Finance, Goldman Sachs has announced its participation in collaboration with Wells Fargo, Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase.

“Our work with the Center will play a pivotal role in our work assisting clients in their transition to a low-carbon economy. We are especially excited about the partnerships that the Center is forging with industry leaders across sectors and are looking forward to engaging with our peers to further the momentum on a just climate transition,” commented John Goldstein, head of the Sustainable Finance Group at Goldman Sachs.

The center’s mission is to serve as an ‘engine room’ for the financial sector, facilitating partnerships with corporate clients to establish practical solutions to transition the global economy to net zero emissions by mid century alongside the industry, civil society and policymakers.

RMI highlights that the financial sector has an important role to play in the global sustainability agenda in order to drive climate aligned solutions. These solutions have a growing focus on implementing the Paris Agreement in real economy sectors. In addition the Center for Climate-Aligned Finance - which will be independently administered by RMI - will collaborate with the financial sector to develop integrated solutions and decision-useful frameworks to drive decarbonisation, as well as relevant metrics, tools and means for tracking progress. 

“Climate alignment is cementing itself as the gold standard for the financial sector, but we need to acknowledge the difficulty of putting the global economy on track to net zero on an urgent timeline. The Center will shape how ambitious commitments can be effectively translated into lasting impact,” commented Paul Bodnar, chair of the Center for Climate-Aligned Finance and managing director at Rocky Mountain Institute. 

“While climate alignment of the financial sector, as an approach, holds promise as a durable, holistic framework that will have a tangible impact on the real economy, implementing the idea in practice will be challenging and require collaboration among the financial sector, its corporate clients and policymakers,” noted RMI in a company statement.  

“Wells Fargo is committed to taking a leadership role in accelerating a just transition to a low carbon economy by working together with multiple stakeholders—most importantly our customers—to advance sustainable business opportunities,” commented Perry Pelos, SEVP and CEO of Commercial Banking at Wells Fargo. “Our commitment to The Center is timely in that it will provide a platform for the financial sector to align on approaches and methodologies to increase our impact, support our customers and communities as they innovate and adapt, and collectively drive toward a low-carbon economy and future.”

Karen Fang, managing director and global head of Sustainable Finance at Bank of America, added that “addressing the global challenge of climate change will take the public, private and nonprofit sectors working together to find scalable and sustainable solutions.” Noting that “the Center’s climate alignment initiative is a critical step forward to better understand climate-related issues and risks, as well as opportunities to mobilize capital needed for the transition to a low-carbon economy.” 

Marisa Buchanan, head of Sustainability for JPMorgan Chase also expressed that “climate change is a critical challenge of our time. JPMorgan Chase supports the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement and the need for market-based policy measures to significantly reduce carbon emissions. The ability to make the goals of Paris a reality requires a deep understanding of the opportunities, as well as the barriers that many industries still face. We are excited to support RMI’s Center for Climate-Aligned Finance in its efforts to work together with the financial sector and a diverse range of industries to develop thoughtful and pragmatic solutions that accelerate a lower-carbon transition.”

Harnessing its 40 years experience in developing market based solutions in order to accelerate the energy transition the center will help develop practical and scalable solutions to accelerate the transition towards a more sustainable energy platform and economy. 

RMI’s CEO, Jules Kortenhorst concluded that “when the history of the energy transition is written, the financial sector could be seen as one of the most important drivers of transformative change—but only if we work quickly and boldly in the coming years to resolve the practical barriers to climate-aligned finance. We invite other financial institutions to join us on the journey.”

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