Greens Show Leadership on Sustainable Finance in European Parliament

A committee vote in the European Parliament today has shown strong support for the sustainable finance agenda ahead of the first legislative proposal from the EU Commission which is expected next month.

The Economics and Monetary Affairs Committee of the European Parliament supported by a large majority [1] a report on Sustainable Finance that included calls for strengthening of disclosure requirements and fiduciary duties, clear and measurable standards for Green bonds, and a globally trusted Green Finance Mark.

As the European Parliament’s Rapporteur of the report, Molly welcomed the strong support from MEPs:

“It was a rare pleasure to lead a process where there was so much agreement across the political groups in the Parliament. In the wake of the Paris Agreement there was almost universal agreement about the need to identify and eliminate carbon-related ‘stranded assets’ from investment portfolios and for a rapid transition to investments that address the wider ecological crisis as well as pushing for the highest social and governance standards.

“The challenge now is to agree what should count as ‘sustainable’ and we hope to contribute positively to the process of developing a taxonomy, currently underway at the Commission. In particular, we want to ensure that it is able to be flexible and dynamic in order to respond to a rapidly changing background and the urgent changes we need to make.’

“It is clear that law-makers will require much more detailed reporting of the environmental impacts of investments in future. Information is also essential for the efficient functioning of financial markets and so we believe that mandatory disclosure of climate and other environmental information is urgently necessary.

“This is also a wake-up call for many of our own institutions to end their over-investment in fossil-fuel infrastructure and projects. It is clear that we can no longer tolerate investments that lock us into fossil-fuel dependency such as the Trans-Anatolian pipeline investment.

“If we are to meet the EU’s commitment to the Paris Agreement and safeguard future generations from climate chaos it is absolutely essential that we move towards a system of sustainable financial investment.”

Notes

[1] The European Parliament’s Economics and Monetary Affairs Committee is made up of 61 MEPs. Of 54 MEPs who voted, 42 voted for, 9 against with 3 abstentions.

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