The UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), Standard Chartered, and KPMG are urging a radical shift in the financing of adaptation and resilience prior to COP29, especially in emerging economies.

This occurs concurrently with the release of a plan by Standard Chartered, KPMG, and UNDRR to stimulate and coordinate sector-wide initiatives to solve the severe financial shortage in resilience and adaptation.

The United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative, the African Development Bank, and other top financial institutions collaborated to create the Guide for Adaptation and Resilience Finance.

It is a useful resource for investors and other financial institutions, and it was made possible by:

  • Establishing a classification framework for adaptation and resilience by providing a common reference and a list of financially viable adaptation and resilience topics and activities;
  • The purpose is to simplify the decision-making process for financing adaptation and resilience by including the most recent practice criteria and frameworks, and
  • The report identifies important investments as well as their co-benefits, which include emissions reductions, nature protection and conservation, and adaptation and resilience advantages.

Climate resilient crops, vertical farming, flood prevention, water conservation, public hospital infrastructure, renewable energy storage options, and man grove conversation are just a few of the more than 100 investable adaptation and resilience projects included in the Guide.

As the hottest year on record (2023), the UN’s most recent research of the climate’s impact emphasises the need for immediate action. The projected losses to the economy, which could harm people’s livelihoods, total over $330bn a year.

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Climate finance presently devotes less than 10% to adaptation, so worsening the global financing gap and falling short of the anticipated $212bn per year required for developing countries by 2030.

The Adaptation Economy Report by Standard Chartered highlights the potential for investors by showing that a $1 investment in adaptation can yield an economic value of $12.

Marisa Drew, chief sustainability officer, Standard Chartered, said: “The Guide will help offer confidence to investors looking to allocate capital to adaptation and resilience projects, helping to advance sector-wide understanding and drive the critical step-change we need to see in capital mobilisation for this crucial area of sustainable finance.”

David Greenall, global managing director, climate risk, decarbonisation, nature & adaptation, KPMG International, stated: “I encourage the banking and investment community to use this Guide as a key resource when considering how and where to invest more proactively and ambitiously in a resilient future.”

Paola Albrito, acting special representative of the UN Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR), added: “This guidance comes at an important moment as governments look to enable greater investment in resilience, including through the G20 work on disaster risk reduction. Financial actors can get ahead and take advantage of this guidance to develop financial products, such as adaption and resilience loans and bonds, that can mobilise private capital. I encourage the financial community to use this opportunity to set targets for themselves in terms of investment portfolios allocated to these objectives.”

As part of the UN climate summit agreement, the Guide responds to COP28’s request to address climate gap in the UAE Framework for Global Climate Resilience.