Winners to be announced at Bloomberg New Energy Finance Future of Energy Summit in New York on April 5
London, March 3, 2016 – Finance for Resilience (FiRe) today announced the selection of eight finalists in its annual competition for financial innovations to drive investments in climate-friendly projects and activities worldwide.
At the 21st Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris last December (COP21), 196 nations, hundreds of cities, and thousands of businesses worldwide committed to transitioning to a low-carbon, climate-resilient economy. World leaders have now turned to the urgent task of implementing these ambitious goals, with the issue of climate-compatible finance and development of critical importance. Recent analysesshow that investment in low-carbon activities is far short of the need in order to keep warming below two degrees centigrade, the goal agreed to in Paris.
FiRe is a platform that develops and promotes innovations that can help achieve this transition to a low-carbon economy by accelerating private finance. Launched in 2014 by Bloomberg New Energy Finance and supported by a grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies, FiRe coordinates closely with The Global Innovation Lab for Climate Finance, a sister initiative that focuses on financial interventions in developing countries. Over its first two competitive cycles in 2014 and 2015, FiRe attracted 84 submissions and helped fast-track support for 10 winning interventions to support clean energy and green growth.
In its 2015-2016 cycle, FiRe received over 40 submissions, including new emphasis on low-carbon cities interventions.
The FiRe Advisory Board, which consists of experts in finance, clean energy, and green infrastructure, assessed and selected the top eight interventions from among this pool. Several of the finalists are working to advance solutions in sustainable cities, while others are working to support adaptation, land use, and other infrastructure needs.
“Given the level of ambition of the Paris Climate Agreement, attention is shifting once again to finance. Now in its third year, FiRe has a proven track record in accelerating innovative, actionable, and transformative financial interventions. This year’s entries were the strongest to date, and I look forward to welcoming eight really promising finalists to our April New York Summit,” said Michael Liebreich, Chairman of the FiRe Advisory Board and Founder of BNEF.
The top eight interventions include:
Affordable Green Homes: A private equity fund that manages and develops affordable, green housing on a commercial basis, targeting Sub-Saharan Africa. Championed by Cathal Conaty of International Housing Solutions.
The Clean Energy Investment Accelerator: A working capital facility for early-stage project development in emerging markets. Championed by Alexia Kelly of Allotrope Partners.
Developing Harmonized Metrics for PayGo Solar: An initiative to enable better reporting and securitization of PayGo Solar, the leading business model for distributed solar energy systems. Championed by Anna Lerner, of the World Bank Group.
The “Double ROI” Platform: Creating a marketplace for high-return ship efficiency retrofits (tools, know-how and financing). Championed by Carbon War Room.
Forest Resilience Bond: An investment platform that aligns the Forest Service and utilities to share the costs and benefits of better forest management. Championed by Blue Forest Conservation.
Global Adaptation & Resilience Fund (GARF): The first fund that will invest in climate risk tools, adaptation and resilience products, measure impact, and demonstrate investment viability. Championed by Jay Koh of Siguler Guff.
Global Renewable Independent Power Supplier (GRIPS): A private sector entity supplying renewable energy to large commercial off-takers and surrounding communities – 24/7, grid-independent, reliable, and competitively priced. Championed by Alexander Voigt of GRIPS Energy AG.
Investor Confidence Project: Standardizes the way energy efficiency projects are brought to market, increasing confidence in predicted returns and scaling up investments globally. Championed by Andy Darrell of Environmental Defense Fund (EDF).
The champions of these interventions will present their idea at the BNEF Future of Energy Summit April 5 to 2,000 energy and finance experts. Four winners will move forward, receiving help with implementation from the FiRe team and external experts.
“We are very pleased with the quality and strength of the finalists, and we’re looking forward to seeing their development in this next phase,” said Barbara Buchner, Senior Director of Climate Policy Initiative, which serves as the FiRe Secretariat.
Finance for Resilience is a platform that collects, develops and helps implement powerful ideas to accelerate finance for clean energy, climate, sustainability, and green growth. Climate Policy Initiative serves as FiRe Secretariat and analytical provider. FiRe is funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies, and Bloomberg New Energy Finance provides in-kind support.
Elysha Davila, Head of Communications, Climate Policy Initiative
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