German envoy says global financial institutions must deal with climate change


The World Bank needs a leader who understands climate science


Financial institutions could help tackle ‘loss and damage’


EU supports COP27 agenda item on loss and damage

BERLIN, Oct 14 (Reuters) – Germany’s climate envoy has said in an interview that global financial institutions need an overhaul to better tackle climate change, which requires leaders who understand science, amid a scuffle over the views of World Bank chief David Malpass.

The comments from Jennifer Morgan, who headed Greenpeace International before joining Germany’s Green-led foreign ministry, come after Malpass declined last month to say he supported the scientific consensus on climate change.

Malpass later apologized and defended the World Bank’s commitment to tackling climate change, but many civil society groups are pushing for his replacement at the head of the bank before his term in office expires. April 2024.

“The set of international financial institutions that came into existence after World War II, the Bretton Woods institutions, are now being discussed in a way that might reorganize them for today’s issues,” said Morgan, born in the United States and Germany‘s first international climate envoy. action, told Reuters. “And we need good leadership for that.”

Britain’s climate envoy Alok Sharma also called for reform of global financial institutions on Friday.

“The world recognizes that we cannot meet the defining challenge of this century with institutions defined by the last,” Sharma said in a speech at the Wilson Center think tank in Washington. “We must encourage all aspects of the international system to recognize the systemic risk of climate change, and to make its effective management its central task.

Financial institutions could help address the sensitive issue of compensation for economic loss and damage from climate-induced extreme weather events, Morgan said.

Morgan, together with Chilean Environment Minister Maisa Rojas, is tasked with proposing a plan on how to include “loss and damage” on the official agenda of the upcoming COP27 climate negotiations. in Egypt from November 6 to 18.

The issue is controversial, as low-income and climate-vulnerable countries seek concrete answers while industrialized countries are reluctant to establish a fund due to the liabilities they might face.

“Germany, the European Union – we strongly support an agenda item (on this),” Morgan said, noting that countries still need to work out some details. “But I don’t think anyone wants an agenda fight at the start of this COP.”

Germany itself was leading a G7 initiative to create a “global climate risk shield” to help communities in vulnerable countries recover faster from disasters, she said. This would make it possible to tailor support to countries and link them to financial, insurance and technical mechanisms.

Germany is also open to negotiating an agreement on loss and damage under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, she said.

Asked about Russia’s potential role at COP27, she said a Russian representative attended the pre-COP talks in Kinshasa last week, which went smoothly.

“They’re a party like any other party,” she said. “We have to show that we can move forward together. So we will see what they do at the COP.” (Reporting by Alexander Ratz and Sarah Marsh; Additional reporting by Valerie Volcovici and Kate Abnett; Editing by Miranda Murray, Raissa Kasolowsky and Mark Porter)

James R. Rhodes