Feb 14 2012
Financing the Decarbonisation of European Infrastructure
By Ingrid Holmes, Jonathan Gaventa, Nick Mabey and Shane Tomlinson
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Call for European Investment Bank to double investment in low carbon transition
As European Energy Ministers gather in Brussels today, a ground-breaking report was issued calling for the European Investment Bank to double its level of investment in low carbon infrastructure to propel Europe on a path of economic recovery and prosperity.
The report, by E3G, sets out a blue-print for how Europe can finance a 30% reduction in greenhouse gases, demonstrating it is both economically and technically feasible. One of the key recommendations is for the European Investment Bank (EIB) to make a presumption against high carbon investment and increase low carbon investment from 30 percent to 60 percent of its activity by 2020.
The EU, once a leader in the low carbon race, is quickly losing ground to countries such as China and South Korea. The report, called “Financing the Decarbonisation of European Infrastructure: 30 percent and beyond”, sets out how the EU can stimulate the financial flows needed to regain its competitive edge.
The E3G report estimates between €465 and €712 billion of public financing is required over the next 10 years to catalyse the scale of private investment needed to put Europe on a pathway to 80 percent GHG reductions by 2050. However a substantive portion of this public investment could be sourced from public banking institutions rather than directly from Budgets.
Ingrid Holmes, Programme Leader for Low Carbon Finance for E3G and lead author of the report said: “The EU appears unable to access the money it needs to make the low carbon transition. Yet it is both feasible and practical. The smart use of public financial institutions can help leverage the billions needed from the private sector to put the EU back at the cutting edge of low carbon development”.