Financing the just transition: powering Asia’s sustainable energy future

Countries in the world’s largest carbon-emitting region are not investing nearly enough in renewable energy to meet global targets for avoiding dangerous planetary heating, according to this new study by Fair Finance Asia, a network of over 90 Asian allied civil society organisations (CSOs) committed to ensuring financial institutions’ funding decisions respect the social and environmental well-being of local communities. The 13-country study found that Asia is experiencing an ‘energy addition’ rather than an energy ‘transition’ due to the slow uptake of climate and energy policies adopted by Asian policy makers, financial regulators, as well as banks, and investors. The report said that the region’s clean energy investments were not aggressive enough to meet the 1.5°C cap on global warming set out by the Paris Agreement, and many are falling short of the renewables outlay needed to meet targets for achieving the climate-critical 2050 net-zero emissions goal. Global greenhouse emissions rose by one per cent last year, with the fastest growth in climate-wrecking carbon pollution coming from Asia’s fossil fuel-dependent economies.