Martin O'Malley, former governor, Maryland
Mogens Lykketoft, president, UN General Assembly
Mafalda Duarte, CEO, Climate Investment Funds
Kenneth Lay, managing director, Rock Creek Capital, former Treasurer, the World Bank
John Lipsky, senior fellow, Foreign Policy Institute, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies

May 31-June 1, 2016

Global leaders in infrastructure finance convened at the World Bank for a two-day summit to share best practices on scaling up climate-smart investment. Johns Hopkins SAIS students Sara Eisemann, Jeff Gibson, Jason McConnell, and Brandon Yeh teamed up with Professor Irving Mintzer and visiting scholars Amber Leonard and Marjorie Tsang to organize the event, which drew 88 industry professionals from 20 countries and five continents.

Panelists agreed that the best way to overcome critical market failures and fill the trillion dollar annual investment gap is to de-risk, aggregate, and securitize the financing for sustainable infrastructure projects. Participants presented successful examples of climate-smart investments that are replicable, scalable, and applicable in multiple geographies. Among others, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and Latin American development banks (IADB, CAF) presented successful examples of innovative financing for roof-top solar systems in India, energy-efficient street lighting in Colombia, and large-scale, grid-connected solar in South Africa.

Participants stressed that developing standardized legal contracts and shared performance metrics are essential for dramatically expanding the pipeline of investable projects – and key to accelerating the rate of project origination and to scaling up successful investment models. They highlighted that declining costs of renewable energy systems and energy-efficiency technologies are creating many new investment opportunities. Discussions focused on how to “crowd-in” more private capital across the climate investment landscape.

Many of the Summit participants reported that the Summit created a unique opportunity to bridge across the traditional communities within the financial services sector ecosystem and to catalyze new coalitions of interest.

The Climate Transactions Summit (CTS) will become an annual event. Contact Professor Irving Mintzer for additional information. 

 

Former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley at the 2016 Climate Transactions Summit: “Carbon will be priced. It’s a matter of when and where…Climate change is the greatest business opportunity to come to the United States in 100 years.”

Former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley at the 2016 Climate Transactions Summit: “Carbon will be priced. It’s a matter of when and where…Climate change is the greatest business opportunity to come to the United States in 100 years.”