Fifty Shades of Green

Fifty Shades of Green

The world needs a new, sustainable financial system to stop runaway climate change

IMF, 2019




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Climate change is destroying assets on a staggering scale. Mark Carney, former head of the Bank of England, describes in this incisive article how the rapid pace of global warming is exerting significant stress on the world’s economies. He also explains the foundation of “a new, sustainable financial system” that will put environmental risk at the center of capital allocation decisions. Financial professionals looking for a firm grounding in this field will appreciate Carney’s succinct but informative map.


Climate change is imposing catastrophic costs on present and future generations.

Global protests in response to surging events of destructive weather point to a growing awareness of the costs of climate change on the environment and human well-being. Steadily increasing record temperatures, rising sea levels and intensifying storms are harbingers of worse things to come. The financial toll is enormous. In 2017, insured losses reached $140 trillion, while uninsured losses totaled $200 trillion. The international goals of decreasing carbon emissions by 45% by 2030 and to bring those to “net zero” by 2050 are imperative in stemming the pace of climate change and its damage.

A new financial system will use environmental risk to...

About the Author

Mark Carney is an economist and the former governor of the Bank of England.

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