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Changing gears on climate action

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The 2019 Climate Summit in New York is calling for urgent action to tackle climate change, avoiding disastrous consequences for all

Climate change is arguably the biggest challenge of our time: affecting the physical environment, but also impacting political and institutional structures and therefore the stability of countries worldwide. Whether it is low-, middle-, or high-income countries, similar risks apply to all. As the risks from climate change are omnipresent, workable solutions can only be identified when all parts of government, business, and society come together.

The UN Climate Action Summit is focusing on six areas that are key to curbing greenhouse gas emissions: finance, energy transition, industry transition, nature-based solutions, cities, and resilience and adaptation.

We’ve picked three of these areas to showcase some of the innovative projects we’re working on.

Spotlighting climate finance

Governments around the world are struggling to find resources to tackle climate change. Funding climate action is expensive, the cost of inaction, however, is arguably larger. Governments have a responsibility to ensure their populations are as resilient as possible to climate shocks, which are happening ever more frequently.  

Through our work on Action on Climate Today (ACT) programme, we devised and tested a Financing Framework for Resilient Growth (FFRG), which provides a framework for countries to estimate the economic cost of climate change damages and quantify current expenditure on adaptation measures. 

However, a critical barrier to success for many countries in this area is engagement with the private sector. To successfully deliver their development goals, governments must work in partnership with the private sector to unlock additional funding. We have researched the barriers to private sector participation, and have provided practical recommendations to scale up this work. Listen to the short clip about this or discover more about the framework here.

The articles below highlight our latest work and thinking on climate finance: 

Supporting energy transition

Understanding the connection between energy and economic growth is vital for developing policies and reforms which will benefit everyone. Our Energy and Economic Growth research programme aims to ensure no one is left behind. Discover more about this programme:

Scaling up urban resilience

Urbanisation poses an additional challenge for governments worldwide. Some estimates predict more than six billion people will live in cities by 2045. Cities already struggle to ensure basic services, jobs, and housing are available. With the looming climate threat, they need to improve the resilience of their cities and populations to successfully withstand climate effects. Our Director of urban economics, Jim Coleman explores the challenges they face:

Find out our latest work and thinking on urban resilience below: