Category: Events

2018 UK Resilience Forum to take place in September at University of Oxford

2018 UK Resilience Forum to take place in September at University of Oxford

Florida Earth is proud to announce its second international program for professionals, the UK Resilience Forum, to be held Monday, September 24 through Friday, September 28, 2018 at the University of Oxford.

Building on the format of our US-Netherlands Connection’s Professional Program (USNC Pro), the UK Resilience Forum explores British expertise in resilience using case studies and field experiences around flood risk management initiatives with a special focus on how resilience can be financed.

Operating out of historic Oxford University’s St John’s College, the delegation will have a day focused on measures to mitigate River Thames flooding through engineered and natural solutions, a visit to the world-famous HR Wallingford Physical Modeling Center and a visit to the Satellite Applications Catapult.

A registration fee of $1950 covers most meals, in-country transportation, venue and admin costs. Airfare and lodging are not included and the responsibility of the delegate.

The programme and additional information can be accessed by clicking here.

Click here for registration. 

Cover photo by Sidharth Bhatia on Unsplash.
The Collider Announces Conference On Climate Risks and Opportunities for the Food and Beverage Industry

The Collider Announces Conference On Climate Risks and Opportunities for the Food and Beverage Industry

The Collider, an innovation ecosystem for climate entrepreneurship, announced the launch of [Food + Beverage] Collider, an industry conference that convenes business leaders, data-driven entrepreneurs, and climate scientists to explore climate risks, opportunities and solutions across the business value chain. The conference will be held October 23-24, 2018, at The Collider in Asheville, NC. Early bird tickets are $399 for conference attendees who register on or before August 17, 2018.

The food and beverage industry is uniquely susceptible to the impacts of a changing climate. Meeting the business challenge to understand the risks, adapt internal strategies, and build resilient operations across the company value chain can increase market competitiveness. Knowing what to do is increasingly about harnessing the best data – climate, environmental, and socioeconomic – to inform solutions.

Research conducted by Collider member Acclimatise reported that, “Successful businesses know how to manage supply chain risk. But an increasing number of extreme weather disasters and a changing climate heighten uncertainty and threaten old ways of doing business. Although many companies seem to be aware of the risks that climate impacts can pose on their operations, there is still a gap between understanding the materials risks posed by climate change and the strategic planning and actions required to reduce potential impact.”

The [Food + Beverage] Collider aims to help close the gap by showcasing how leading food and beverage companies identify and address climate risk, and helping attendees forecast their resilience gameplans.

Collider CEO Josh Dorfman added, “This is a new kind of climate conference. It’s about addressing business risk posed by climate change and identifying opportunities to build operational resilience that can minimize disruption and enhance market competitiveness. We take the position that the climate is already changing, so the time for businesses to address their risk and take action is now.”

Topics include:

  • The future of the food and beverage industry in a changing climate
  • Using climate data to identify climate risk across the food and beverage value chain
  • The competitive advantage of becoming climate resilient
  • External drivers of climate resilient value chains
  • Building climate resilient, climate-smart agriculture
  • Solution snapshot: climate entrepreneurs showcase emerging adaptation and resilience solutions

For more information and to register for the conference visit:

To receive a 10% discount on the conference fee, subscribe to Acclimatise’s Network Updates and receive the discount code in the next newsletter.

About The Collider: Headquartered in “Climate City” — Asheville, North Carolina, USA — The Collider is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that exists to bring together diverse expertise and stimulate a new industry: climate products and services. Acclimatise is an inaugural member of The Collider. More information about The Collider is available at Follow The Collider on Facebook (@TheCollider.Asheville), Twitter (@TheColliderAVL), Instagram (@TheCollider.AVL), and LinkedIn (@TheCollider).

Only two months to go until Flood Expo opens its doors

Only two months to go until Flood Expo opens its doors

Over 4,000 flood professionals will pack out Birmingham’s NEC in September 2018 to attend the world’s largest flood resilience, mitigation and rescue exhibition and conference.

Running on the 12th & 13th, the Flood Expo will showcase the innovative products and technology helping to deal with the ever-increasing global threat of flooding – transforming Birmingham into the hub of the industry over two exciting days.

With an unparalleled lineup of 150 innovative exhibitors and 100 expert-led seminars hosted by the likes of Ina Lambert of the United Nations, Mary Dhonau, Simon Crowther, plus an unmissable panel session delivered by the Chartered Institution of Water and Environmental Management, the agenda is second to none.

Alongside this, the show will host unique opportunities to network, gain one-to-one advice from industry leading experts, and access four other leading environmental exhibitions taking place on the same day: The Marine & Coastal Civil Engineering Expo, RWM, The Contamination Series Expo and The Future Resource Expo – this year the event really will be bigger and better than ever!

Register for your free ticket for this year’s event by clicking here.

For exhibition enquiries, please contact James Berryman at 01872 218 007 or email

Cover photo by Simone Hutsch on Unsplash.
Reflections on Adaptation Futures 2018

Reflections on Adaptation Futures 2018

By Laura Canevari

This year, Adaptation Futures opened its doors in Cape Town from 18 to 21 June. As the city faced the strongest drought in decades, delegates gathered in the South African capital to discuss how climate-related problems, such as the one Cape Town is facing, can be solved and managed.

Starting on the Gold Coast in 2010, the biannual conference has been frequented by a growing and largely diverse community of individuals and organisations from around the world who are all committed to developing responses to the impacts of climate change across a wide range of themes.

During this year’s conference, strong emphasis was placed on the role of community- and network-led initiatives in Africa as well as on the role of international financing institutions bridging the adaptation-development gap.

Mobilising the private sector

Efforts to demystify international climate finance continue, and voices from the private sector were heard, expressing the need to build a stronger business case for adaptation solutions.

For example, it was made evident that in order for the private sector to invest in Ecosystem-based Adaptation and Nature Based Solutions, metrics need to be developed that help translate environmental and societal adaptation benefits into indicators of adaptive performance on which to monitor progress and success. Accordingly, we need to re-integrate the time dimension into these discussions and acknowledge that not all adaptation options are formulated to produce immediate results, and that a mix of short, medium and long-term solutions is needed.

From satellites to court rooms

On Wednesday, Acclimatise, together with Space4Climate and GEO, organised a World Café on applications of Earth observation data, collecting the efforts from 13 organizations facilitating discussions around 14 case studies on agriculture, cities, financial institutions, insurance, and health. Our combined efforts highlighted the need to combine EO data with socio-economic data in order to develop adequate narratives about the experienced impacts of climate change. A summary of the session can be found by clicking this link.

On Thursday, during a session focusing on “Resourcing Adaptation”, Acclimatise reflected on the results from two Horizon 2020 projects, MARCO and EU-MACS, noting that in order to mobilise private sector investment in adaptation, we need to develop adequate services for sectors where the demand for climate information is increasing.

In our presentation, we discussed the climate service needs of the financial and the legal sector, noting how increased attention and action on climate related legislation and litigation, as well as the emergence of voluntary and mandatory financial disclosure frameworks, have triggered an exponential increase in the need to develop climate services for these two sectors.

Consolidation and innovation: two key areas for future development

At Cape Town, the conversation remained generally vibrant across the halls and in parallel sessions, but there is scope for improvement on at least two fronts. On the one hand, future conferences under this biannual series should strive to motivate participants to consolidate knowledge emphasising the need to formulate better initiatives in the future. Last week, we saw numerous case studies showcasing “success” stories, however, mostly without in-depth analyses of adaptation-enabling factors or descriptions of the mechanisms that could be used to replicate and scale up solutions. Equally, there is still a lot of room for innovative ideas and solutions. An exploration on how other fields are innovating may help to uncover some hints on how to remain innovative in adaptation: words inundating the web such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, and the circular economy were missing from debates, yet they could enrich discussions around adaptation.

As noted in the opening plenary by Patrick Child, Deputy Director-General of the European Commission’s Directorate-General Research and Innovation, climate adaptation requires partnerships between researchers, innovators, and administrators. Partnerships that combine the experiences and skillsets of different actors are highly needed and should be framed around specific aspirations on adaptation outcomes. Efforts over the next two years should focus on nurturing these types of partnerships in order to create an enabling environment for adaptation innovation and consolidation.

Cover photo by Marlin Jackson on Unsplash.
Global Adaptation Network’s Major Forum contributes to Talanoa Dialogue

Global Adaptation Network’s Major Forum contributes to Talanoa Dialogue

By Global Adaptation Network

Abu Dhabi, UAE –The Global Adaptation Network held its 2nd Forum last March. Convened in UAE, the event brought to light various issues in adaptation and constituted the first event to contribute to the Talanoa Dialogue, an ongoing global discourse on climate change. Since then, the Forum has been feeding into climate policy on a global scale, and last month, the UNFCCC’s Bonn Climate Conference used findings from the event to enrich its own discussions and negotiations.

Honorable Inia Seruiratu, Fijian Minister of Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development. Read his full speech here

GAN’s Forum was held in collaboration with Zayed University and the UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. Bringing together high-level Ministers and over 120 adaptation experts, the Forum presented cutting-edge solutions for building resilience. It covered a set of salient themes, including state-of-the-art adaptation technologies, procedures for measuring adaptation progress, and methods for spreading knowledge. A recurring cross-cutting theme was the role of the private sector in building resilience.

It was previously decided that GAN’s Forum, with all its outcomes and perspectives, would provide the next chapter of the Talanoa Dialogue. ‘Talanoa’ is a traditional word used across Fiji and the Pacific to signify a discourse of openness, trust and inclusivity. The purpose of the Dialogue is to advance international cooperation on climate change through the sharing of ideas, skills, and storytelling. As such, the Forum was privileged to host, as a keynote speaker, Fiji’s High-Level Climate Champion, the Honorable Minister Inia Seruiratu.

His Excellency Fahad Al Hammadi, UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment

In keeping with the principle of inclusivity, one of the predominant themes of the Forum was how to reach those most vulnerable to climate change impacts. Participants sought to analyse the role of insurance in helping the poor to absorb climate shocks. More specifically, there was keen interest in the possibility of establishing an African learning platform for climate risk insurance.

The question of how to quantify different aspects of adaptation is of increasing importance, and the Forum devoted its efforts to explore these challenges. How do we measure our progress? How do we calculate climate risk? Taking a finance approach, the Global Centre of Excellence on Climate Adaptation pointed to data from the Adaptation Gap report. They urged that, under the most conservative estimates, global investment in adaptation will need to increase by at least 438% by 2050.

“This is what makes Forums such as this so important – bringing together experts… from different sectors and organisations to not only share your knowledge and progress, but to also develop linkages between your sectors.”
– Fiji Minister Inia Seruiratu

Another integral topic of GAN’s Forum was adaptation learning and knowledge-exchanges. Sessions demonstrated how scientific information is communicated between countries in the interests of building resilience, drawing on experiences from Japan, Mongolia and the Philippines. In addition, there was a focus on the role of universities in solving adaptation challenges. Jessica Barlow outlined the efficacious EPIC model, which connects universities and their resources to real-word issues faced by local cities. Jessica Hitt from EcoAdapt presented her ongoing work with the Climate Adaptation Knowledge Exchange (CAKE), currently the world’s largest and most used source of adaptation case studies.

The UNFCCC are among many who are advocating for more progress with engaging the private sector in adaptation. GAN took the opportunity to use this as a cross-cutting theme of the Forum. John Firth, CEO of the adaptation company Acclimatise, gave a persuasive talk on how to involve businesses. Firth explained that the private sector has always excelled in risk management, and adaptation specialists must configure a way to uptake this expertise.

“The climate change community has tended to see adaptation and resilience as a public sector issue… The reality is that the services we consume, and what we need to build resilience, are actually produced by the private sector.”
– John Firth, CEO of Acclimatise

Pertinent to the Forum’s location in Abu Dhabi, the event also took stock of the pioneering adaptation technologies being developed in the Gulf region. Novel projects were displayed by Zayed University, including selective-breeding to produce genetically resilient coral species. The Forum concluded with a visit to Masdar City, a planned project in Abu Dhabi set to house some of the world’s major cleantech organizations, including the International Renewable Energy Agency.

This article was originally published on the Global Adaptation Network website, click here to read it.

Visit the UNFCCC website to learn more about the Talanoa Dialogue.

Cover photo by FritzDaCat/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0): Abu Dhabi Skyline from sea.
Exhibition: A look back at the Adaptation Futures journey

Exhibition: A look back at the Adaptation Futures journey

As part of this year’s Adaptation Futures conference in Cape Town, Acclimatise, together with the Stockholm Environment Institute and the Global Centre for Excellence on Climate Adaptation,  created an exhibition about the evolution of the conference.

The exhibition follows the journey of the conference not just around the globe, but also how its narrative evolved over the years. The conference’s thematic emphasis started with a strong focus on climate science and information on impacts in 2010 and evolved to increasingly highlight adaptation planning and capacity building in 2012. In 2014, development and the concept of vulnerability are front and centre at the same time as the concept of risk starts to emerge. Finally, in 2016, resilience and risk rise to the top of the agenda. It is also the first year with a very strong presence of the private sector.

Two themes that have consistently moved up the agenda since 2010 are risk management and water. For the latter especially, Cape Town sets a somewhat dramatic stage as the city has been dealing with very challenging drought conditions lately.

Have a look at the graphics below to get a sense of what the exhibit looks like, and if you are in Cape Town, make sure you visit in person – the exhibition can be found right outside the Auditorium on Level 1 of the Cape Town International Convention Centre.

Cover photo by Matt Howard on Unsplash.
Cape Town climate conference kicks off in wake of water crisis

Cape Town climate conference kicks off in wake of water crisis

By Georgina Wade

This week, a major international climate change conference takes place in a city that is dealing with one of the most severe water crises in its history. The Adaptation Futures conference, taking place in Cape Town, South Africa, will host delegates from around the world to discuss how the world can better prepare for climate change and its impacts. The conference has put in place measures to reduce its water demand, but in doing so it has also highlighted the severe inequality in both access to water, and in the ability to adapt to a lack of it.

An El-Niño-triggered drought struck the Western Cape province of South Africa in 2015, resulting in a severe water shortage in the city of Cape Town and the surrounding region. At the start of this year, April 2018 was announced by the government as “day zero” – a moment when dam levels would be so low that they would turn off the taps in the city and send people to communal water collection points. The water shortages are shining a light on South Africa’s already high-income inequality. South Africa has a long history of social inequity, and to this day 10 percent of the population own more than 90% of the country’s wealth.

With the current water consumption limit set at 50 litres per person, surges of spending on personal efforts to counteract the limited water supply are on the rise amongst wealthier residents. One such method is through the installation of a borehole which works by tapping into underwater reservoirs.

Borehole installation in the backyards of the wealthier Cape Town suburbs currently costs anywhere from $6,000 USD, with high demand resulting in a waiting list of requests that can take up to 7 months to fulfil. While borehole use is legal, Level 6b water restrictions currently prohibit the use of borehole water for outdoor purposes and requires that all water use be metered and recorded for availability upon inspection. Additionally, machines that turn moisture into drinking water are costing residents around $2,000 USD per installation. “The lesson here is that you can’t trust the government to provide water for you,” said Gabby De Wet, whose family owns De Wet’s Wellpoints and Boreholes. But where does this leave those that can’t afford to prepare for the worst?

With residents scrambling to find their own private solutions, the availability of options truly boils down to monetary income. And for the poor, it means waiting to see what solutions the government comes up with while contemplating what cuts can be made to weekly food intake in order to buy bottled water.

Although water conservation efforts have pushed back “Day Zero” to 2019, informal settlements on the outskirts of the city are still struggling to obtain clean water to meet their daily needs. For many residents of the city’s low-income townships, water has always been a rare commodity. In Cape Town’s largest township, Khayelitsha, it is estimated that around 1.2 million people live in informal housing, relying on communal toilets and drawing water from communal standpipes.

Wealthier residents still use more water

Some say poorer residents are unfairly blamed for overuse of water resources, as concerns rise over water waste. After exploring the distribution of water usage, the Associated Press found that most of the misuse can be attributed to those of the wealthier class. According to water experts, the Cape Town’s poor townships make up 25 percent of the city’s 4 million people yet only use 4.5 percent of the water.

“It has been in the areas where people have gardens and swimming pools,” Kirsty Carden of Future Water Institute said. “They are much more profligate in the way that they use water, because they’re used to the water just coming out of the taps.”

Cape Town’s economy relies heavily on business and event tourism with the city recently crowned by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) as the number one city in Africa for business tourism events. Given that tourism supports an estimated 300,000 jobs in South Africa’s Wester Cape province, visitors avoiding Cape Town due to water shortages would have a significant impact on peoples’ livelihoods.

While additional population pressure from tourists may increase water demand slightly, research suggests that international visitors to Cape Town add a maximum of 1% to the local population during the peak summer season. With short-term and relatively moderate water needs compared to other water consumers, the $3.4 billion economic contribution tourism provides to the province holds a significantly positive impact to Cape Town and the thousands of households it supports.

A climate conference in the midst of a climate crisis

Adaptation Futures 2018 aims to facilitate dialogues for solutions between key actors from diverse perspectives and regions on adaptation efforts linked to sustainable development, investment and planning. With a strong focus on Africa and the Global South, the conference aims to use the Cape Town setting to foreground developing country adaptation issues.

Acknowledging the significant ecological and carbon footprints conferences inevitably have, the organisers have outlined and established methods towards reducing impacts in an effort to ‘green the conference’.

“The organisers of Adaptation Futures 2018 are actively planning to reduce or offset the conference footprint as much as possible,” the website states. “Minimising the conference footprint depends on every single participant and we count on everyone to make this conference notably and visibly environmentally friendly in both word and action.”

The conference venue, the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC), has decreased its use of municipal water through rain water harvesting tanks and its own desalination unit, as well as using bottled water for all culinary purposes. Additionally, the CTICC has aligned all its sustainability efforts and commitments with Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) standards.

The CTICC’s 65,000 litres of rain water storage tanks allow for the reuse of water for all cleaning and maintenance activities inside the centre. Furthermore, the implementation of air-cooling systems that create water from air will allow for the storage of water in the available 10,000 litres of grey water storage tanks. With a recorded 42% saving in water consumption for the first quarter of its current financial year compared to the same period last year, the CTICC’s focus remains on reducing water usage wherever possible and ensuring their events run successfully in a responsible manner.

Each delegate will be expected to adhere to the water restriction of 50 litres per person per day and will be provided with a durable water bottle to be refilled at designated water points. For the 200,000 litres of water expected to be used by 1,000 delegates, Adaptation Futures 2018 will compensate by donating rain water harvesting tanks to a local project that will reduce future municipal consumption.

Emphasising that an offset is not a license to use more water, Adaptation Futures is encouraging all of its delegates to adhere to the stipulated level 6b water restrictions. Additionally, the city of Cape Town will be hosting two sessions on urban water scarcity and delegates will be invited to contribute potential adaptation solutions.

Perpetuating inequality?

While some have raised questions about whether Adaptation Futures should have been moved from Cape Town so as to relieve pressure on water resources, others make the point that the event has an opportunity to bring global attention to climate risks. There is no doubt that the conference has been proactive in reducing the impact of its own water use, however has it done enough to reduce the problem of water inequality in the city?

Hotels in the area are now taking steps to decrease reliance on municipal water supply. South Africa’s biggest hotel group, Tsogo Hotel Holdings, is even building a desalination plant that will help supply its Cape Town hotel with their own water, as well as provide alternative water augmentation. The new plant, will use a considerable amount of energy to produce potable water for some of the wealthiest of Cape Town’s visitors. It risks becoming a totem of water inequality in the city.

Although Adaptation Futures claims it will be supporting a worthy project that reduces municipal water consumption and increases off grid water usage, the details of this project have yet to be published and may not be created in the interest of benefiting the poorer neighbourhoods. Rather than focusing minds on delivering enough water to the city’s central business district, Adaptation Futures should use this opportunity to help finance water efficiency and supply projects that benefit some of these more water-vulnerable communities. Water scarcity will be front of mind for many of the delegates to the conference; to provide city-wide solutions to future climate scarcity, the inequality of the residents’ capacity and capability to take adaptation action must also be a primary consideration.

Acclimatise will be presenting a number of sessions at Adaptation Futures 2018. Our team members John Firth, Laura Canevari, and Virginie Fayolle will be at the conference. Find out where you can meet them by clicking here.

Cover photograph by Mike Peel/Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-SA-4.0): Reservoir in Cape Town, view from Signal Hill, taken on 12 June 2014.
Acclimatise at Adaptation Futures 2018

Acclimatise at Adaptation Futures 2018

Adaptation Futures 2018 is just around the corner and some of our Acclimatise colleagues are getting ready to make their way to Cape Town.

Below you can see where to find Acclimatise staff during the conference (click the image to enlarge). Follow us on Twitter to stay up to date on what we’re up to in Cape Town and do get in touch with our colleagues, if you would like to meet them at Adaptation Futures.

You can also download the schedule as PDF by clicking here.

Cover photo by Pexels.
Event summary: Advancing TCFD guidance on physical climate risks and opportunities

Event summary: Advancing TCFD guidance on physical climate risks and opportunities

On 31st May 2018, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), in partnership with the Global Centre of Excellence on Climate Adaptation (GCECA), held the conference Advancing TCFD Guidance on Physical Climate Risks and Opportunities. The EBRD welcomed the opportunity to host this event as a supporter of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). The EBRD is the first multilateral development bank to officially join over 280 supporter organisations in becoming a supporter of the TCFD and of its recommendations on including climate-related information – both risks and opportunities – in financial disclosures.

The event launched the EBRD-GCECA report that builds on the TCFD recommendations and presents practical guidance for corporates looking to disclose their risks and opportunities with regard to physical climate impacts. This report is the result of a six-month dialogue between industry-led working groups composed of representatives of corporates, financial institutions and regulators.

In light of the report’s 18 recommendations, the conference facilitated discussion and reflections on the relevance of physical climate-related risks and opportunities to financial markets. Three panels, gathering corporations, banks, regulators, asset managers, rating agencies, and others were convened to discuss the practical implementation of physical climate-related disclosure metrics by corporations.

Download the flagship conference report and other conference materials.

Event summary

The conference was opened by Josué Tanaka, EBRD Managing Director, and Pierre Heilbronn, EBRD Vice President, who welcomed the audience and set the scene by highlighting EBRD’s long-standing commitment to financing the transition to a low-carbon and climate-resilient economy.

Henk Reinders, speaking on behalf of the Dutch Central Bank DNB, stressed the role that regulators must play regarding physical risk. Curtis Ravenel, Global Head of Sustainable Business and Finance at Bloomberg, presented TCFD recommendations related to physical climate risks and opportunities, and the challenges related to their eventual identification on balance sheets. Roelfien Kuijpers, Head of Responsible Investments and Strategic Relationships at DWS, encouraged investors to address physical climate disclosures through shareholder engagement to support a “just transition” that addresses the equity implications of repricing exposed assets. She also called on regulators to support this effort by requiring sector-based climate-related disclosure protocols and helping develop a new climate analytics industry.

The first panel ‘Advancing TCFD recommendations on physical climate risks and opportunities’ gathered the three chairs of the working groups who presented the EBRD-GCECA report’s findings. Murray Birt, DWS, stressed the importance of assessing climate risks over longer timeframes of assets and instruments, disclosing information on the location of critical facilities, providing detailed information on the financial impacts of recent extreme weather events and weather variability on facilities and value chains, as well as forecasting financial impacts of future physical climate risks. Simon Connell, Standard Chartered Bank, focused on opportunities, defined as increasing the resilience of existing assets to current and future physical climate risks, along with identifying new markets and product demand that may emerge as a result of shifting climate patterns. He highlighted the importance of identifying and disclosing physical climate-related opportunities at the segment level as well as wider co-benefits from climate resilience investments. Greg Lowe, Aon, explained that physical climate scenarios constitute a critical tool to ensure better capital allocation, as they provide useful views of plausible futures. As such, the analysis of physical climate scenarios requires an exploration of different GHG pathways and their impacts on climate and weather systems. Finally, Craig Davies, EBRD, presented the Bank’s efforts to support market transformation toward climate resilient economies by mobilising wider market action through developing new ways of sharing market information about physical climate change impacts.

The second panel ‘Managing physical climate risks and opportunities – experience to date’ brought together physical climate risk disclosure preparer and user perspectives, as Maersk, Citi, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and Moody’s shared their experiences on the management of physical climate risks and opportunities. While their experiences to date varied, panellists all welcomed the TCFD framework as a means to bring physical climate risks and opportunities under deeper scrutiny in their organisations. The need for engagement emerged as an important theme from the panel. The interdependencies between financial institutions and corporates, and in turn between corporates and their supply chains, was said to require new relationships and engagement at multiple levels – both externally and internally. Another takeaway was the desire to strike the right balance between disclosures that are useful for financial institutions and for corporates’ strategic purposes. In these early stages of physical climate risk analysis and disclosure, what is truly ‘decision useful information’ is yet to be determined, though panellists maintained that the new EBRD-GCECA report goes a long way to provide guidance on this issue.

The third panel ‘How to include physical climate risks and opportunities in financial disclosure’ capped the event, bringing together financial regulators and government actors, as well as the voluntary disclosure perspective. Jean Boissinot, French Treasury, noted that while there is now room for further regulation on physical climate risk disclosures, regulators need to think carefully about it to ensure it results in information that is complementary, enabling information flows, and is aligned with other initiatives such as the TCFD. Mark Cornelius, Bank of England, discussed the Bank’s current information gathering initiative in the insurance and banking sectors and ensured the Bank and its regulatory functions are highly supportive of initiatives like TCFD that are by and for the market. Simon Messenger, Climate Disclosure Standards Board, commented that stronger regulation can help standardise physical climate-related disclosures. Antoine Begasse, European Commission, agreed that regulators have a role to play, but that regulation needs to be fit for purpose to generate comparable information from industry. In this light, the Commission is launching a public consultation on strengthening reporting requirements, and developing a taxonomy of adaptation (and mitigation) finance including metrics to be used in climate-related disclosures, to be integrated into regulation and to support climate-related reporting.

Closing remarks were provided by Roald Lapperre, Deputy Minister at the Netherlands Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, Curtis Ravenel of Bloomberg, and Josué Tanaka of EBRD. The host concluded that the disclosure process is happening, and that TCFD and the emerging EU sustainable finance approach provide useful frameworks. It was also recognised the tension between the need for consistency and the need for sector-specific metrics. Ultimately, there is high demand to translate awareness of physical climate risks and opportunities into metrics that can influence the decisions made by businesses and financial institutions.

Key Takeaways

  • Physical climate-related disclosures are part of an iterative process and constitute a learning exercise for corporations and financial institutions. They will need to include both quantitative and qualitative elements, to avoid the publication of commercially-sensitive data related to the provision of detailed climate risk information.
  • Disclosures and scenario analysis are not an end per se. The analysis of physical climate risks and opportunities should be about strategic analysis as much as it should be about disclosure.
  • There is a general need for better and more granular data provision on corporates’ facilities, their importance and their location. The information can come from universities and analytics firms as well as from better engagement between investors and clients.
  • Better disclosures of physical climate risks and opportunities will arise from a cooperative working process to ensure learning and awareness-raising between the following actors: banks (involving all teams including credit risk, industry teams and sustainability departments), investors asking questions to companies in which they invest, along with the latter assessing their whole value chain.
  • The long-term horizon is relevant for physical climate scenario analysis, as due diligence processes usually entail longer timeframes, and relationships with clients extend over the longer term.
  • The development of guidance and protocols on physical climate-related disclosures should be pursued. They should support market participants in increasing their climate risk awareness and the focus includes both acute and chronic physical climate risks. Regulators need to ensure that any new climate disclosure regulation results in information that is complementary, enabling information flows, and aligned with other initiatives such as TCFD.
  • MDBs have a role to play in ensuring that emerging economies are not left behind as new regulatory and market practices on climate-related disclosures emerge. They can support businesses and financial institutions in emerging markets to adopt and keep up with evolving best international practices on climate-related disclosures, for example through supporting skills transfer, capacity building and policy dialogue, as well as exploring the development of new financing instruments that include e.g. the appropriate use of concessionality and calibrated loan pricing.
  • The TCFD provides a useful framework for the analysis of climate risk and opportunities. Together with the EU sustainable finance approach, it is the push many corporates need to get started on their journey to uncover physical climate risks and opportunities. Growing awareness on physical climate risks and opportunities needs to translate into the development and use of robust metrics that inform better market decisions and the more rational allocation of capital in the light of information about physical climate change impacts.

Download the flagship conference report and other conference materials.

More on the initiative

The initiative was hosted by EBRD which also funds its technical secretariat. The GCECA provided a secondment to the technical secretariat. The technical secretariat was facilitated by Acclimatise, a specialist consulting company advising major corporates and financial institutions on climate risk and resilience, and by Four Twenty Seven, a firm providing market intelligence on the economics of climate change.

Participants involved in the expert working groups included: Agence Française de Développement, Allianz, APG Asset Management, AON, the Bank of England, Barclays, Blackrock, Bloomberg, BNP Paribas, Citi, Danone, the Dutch National Bank, DWS Deutsche AM, European Investment Bank, Lightsmith Group, Lloyds, Maersk, Meridiam Infrastructure, Moody’s, S&P Global Ratings, Shell, Siemens, Standard Chartered, USS and Zurich Alternative Asset Management.

Information about further updates and events will be posted on the website If you require further information about any of these activities, please contact

The event attracted significant media attention and was reported by the New York Times, Reuters and Environmental Finance.

GEO Week 2018 – Call for Expression of Interest: Exhibition and Side Events

GEO Week 2018 – Call for Expression of Interest: Exhibition and Side Events

From 29 October – 2 November, the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) is hosting GEO Week 2018 in Kyoto, Japan. The GEO-XV Plenary and associated events will also take place during that time.

This gathering of GEO’s 105 Member governments and 126 Participating Organizations will explore efforts and opportunities for the use of Earth observations for the benefit of humankind, focusing on GEO’s three priority areas: the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Paris Climate Agreement, and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The GEO Secretariat has launched a call for expressions of interest to collect proposals for the exhibition and side events. Download the pre-registration forms:

The forms should be submitted to secretariat(a) by 15 June 2018.

More information and registration will be available soon on the GEO Week website.