Banking imperatives for managing climate risk

More than regulatory pressure is driving banks to manage climate risk. Financing a green agenda is also a commercial imperative—but specialized skills are needed to protect balance sheets.

The surface temperature of the Earth has risen at a record pace in recent decades, creating risks to life, ecosystems, and economies. Climate science tells us that further warming is unavoidable over the next decade, and probably after that as well. In this uncertain environment, banks must act on two fronts: they need both to manage their own financial exposures and to help finance a green agenda, which will be critical to mitigate the impact of global warming. An imperative in both cases is excellent climate-risk management.

The physical risks of climate change are powerful and pervasive. Warming caused by greenhouse gases could damage livability and workability—for example, through a higher probability of lethal heat waves. Global warming will undermine food systems, physical assets, infrastructure, and natural habitats. The risk of a significant drop in grain yields—of 15 percent or more—and damage to capital stock from flooding will double by 2030. In aggregate, we expect that around a third of the planet’s land area will be affected in some way.1

Disruptive physical impacts will give rise to transition risks and opportunities in the economy, including shifts in demand, the development of new energy resources, and innovations arising from the need to tackle emissions and manage carbon, as well as necessary reforms in food systems. Sectors that will bear the brunt include oil and gas, real estate, automotive and transport, power generation, and agriculture. In oil and gas, for example, demand could fall by 35 percent over the next decade. The good news is that these changes should also precipitate a sharp decline in emissions.

January 2020 was the warmest January on record. As temperatures rise in this way, it is incumbent on banks to manage the relevant risks and opportunities effectively (Exhibit 1).

Συνέχεια ανάγνωσης εδώ

Πηγή: mckinsey

Σχετικά Άρθρα