Clean Investor, December 6: Deutsche Bank on Durban climate talks

The regular Tuesday round-up of clean investing news

Deutsche Bank says the current climate change negotiations in Durban “must clear the path for more low carbon investment”. The private sector is a “critical partner” for success, the bank says, adding that the Green Climate Fund must focus on leveraging private sector investment and should begin operating as soon as possible. The remarks come in a policy paper co-written by Caio Koch-Weser, Vice Chairman, Deutsche Bank (a member in the UN Secretary-General’s High Level Advisory Group on Climate Finance) and Mark Fulton, Global Head of Climate Change Investment Research at DB Climate Change Advisors.
Dutch pension fund ABP has accepted that a €47m Mozambique forestry project investment failed to meet its responsible investment requirements. It follows criticism in the Volksrant newspaper about the project, the Global Solidarity Forest Fund (GSFF), which is run by an asset management company owned by the Diocese of Västerås (Sweden), Lutheran Church of Sweden and the Norwegian Lutheran Church Endowment. Link
Norges Bank Investment Management has disclosed a 5.2% stake in US-listed water group Watts Water Technologies. North Andover, Massachusetts-based Watts, founded in 1874, had net sales of $1.2bn in 2009. Link

Concerns have been raised over the UK’s planned Green Investment Bank, according to a report in the Guardian. It says it has seen a draft document drawn up by the government which shows the there’s been a “downgrading” of the funds being offered by the Treasury from £3bn to “up to £3bn”.
A banking syndicate has put together €138m in long-term loan financing for the EnBW Baltic 1 German offshore wind farm project. The 21-turbine 48MW facility is 16km off the coast of northern Germany. The banks involved include the European Investment Bank, KfW IPEX-Bank, Landesbank Baden-Württemberg and NIBC Bank. Link

The governments of Australia and New Zealand have said they could link their carbon trading schemes as soon as 2015, according to a Reuters report. “Markets are the way to cut our emissions at least cost,” it cited Australia’s Minister for Climate Change Greg Combet and his New Zealand counterpart Tim Groser as saying in a joint statement. “That is why Australia is working with New Zealand to develop them domestically and internationally.”The World Bank is exploring the idea of issuing the first Green Sukuk, or Islamic bonds, to fund low carbon development or environmental projects, according to the Climate Bonds Initiative. “They’re collaborating with the Islamic Financial Service Board (IFSB) to work out a framework to identify issues involved for Islamic financial institutions,” the initiative’s Sean Kidney says in his blog from Durban.

Investment bank Goldman Sachs has pointed to the work being done on climate change disclosure by the Carbon Disclosure Project and the Investor Network on Climate Risk (INCR). The commentary, by Goldman’s public policy research unit the Global Markets Institute, is called ‘Next Stop Durban: Moving Beyond the Kyoto Protocol’ and is available here.

The Brazilian state of Rio de Janeiro will launch an emissions trading scheme for its biggest carbon emitters between 2013 and 2015, which it hopes can serve as a model for other states and form the basis for a national carbon market, reports Point Carbon, citing a state government official.

A new NGO study titled: “Bankrolling Climate Change” examines commercial banks’ lending for the coal industry and publishes a climate ranking for financial institutions. The report examines the portfolios of 93 banks and looks into their support for 31 major coal-mining companies (representing 44% of global coal production) and 40 producers of coal-fired electricity (which together own over 50% of global coal-fired generation capacity). It has been published NGOs, Urgewald, Groundwork, Earthlife Africa Johannesburg and BankTrack.

Austria: the European Investment Bank has granted a €200m loan to a 198MW wind farm project in the Burgenland region. The EIB has also agreed to provide £150m of long-term funding for the 100-turbine 300MW Thanet Offshore Wind Farm – the largest offshore wind farm in the world.
Trucost, the environmental data research firm, has partnered with sustainability software firm credit360 to provide environmental performance benchmarking data to the latter’s clients, which include Barclays, Philips and Logica.