EIB President Werner Hoyer announces new climate ambitions and presents transformative initiative for urban climate finance at the UN General Assembly
23 September 2019
Speaking at the UN Climate Action Summit, EIB President Werner Hoyer said, “The recent climate protests are a wake-up call for all of us.” He outlined how the EIB Group is stepping up its climate ambitions.
“We aim to unlock more than 1.1 trillion dollars of climate action and environmental investment over the next decade through EIB financing. A significant share of this will be in cities. To achieve this, at least 50% of EIB Group finance will be for climate action and environmental sustainability by 2025. In addition, by the end of 2020, the EIB Group will align all its financing activities with the goals of the Paris Agreement. An important first step will be phasing out energy projects that depend on fossil fuels.”
President Hoyer described the EIB as an “incubator for climate finance and expertise to mobilize others, helping our societies and economies transform to a low carbon future”.
Addressing the assembly, President Hoyer stressed the key role of cities in the fight against climate change. He presented the Leadership for Urban Climate Investment (LUCI), one of the transformative initiatives of the UN Climate Summit, supported by the EIB and led by Germany’s environment ministry BMU.
“This is a transformative new initiative to help cities invest in low-carbon and climate resilient infrastructure. LUCI is bringing together existing and future initiatives. It will accelerate urban climate finance and reinforce national framework conditions for urban investments,” President Hoyer said.
The LUCI coalition seeks to strengthen the capacity of 2 000 cities in project preparation, creating 1 000 bankable climate-smart urban projects by 2030 while building new, innovative financing mechanisms.
As one of the solutions to support such urban investment, Werner Hoyer highlighted the new Cities Climate Finance Gap Fund, to which Germany and Luxembourg have already contributed, and which aims at raising more than EUR 100 million in grants to unlock investments worth at least EUR 4 billion in urban infrastructure projects.
The EIB Group has stepped up its level of precaution at its headquarters in Luxembourg and in its external offices. All staff will telework as of 16 March. A small number of staff whose physical presence on EIB premises is indispensable will continue to be present on the EIB campus. The decision aims to protect the health of employees and ensure the continuity of the EIB Group’s activity.
On Wednesday the EIB identified its first case of one staff member who tested positive for corona virus.
As a precautionary measure, the EIB decided not to hold the meeting of its Board of Directors planned for Thursday 12 March in person. Decisions on the Board’s agenda will be taken by written procedure. The Bank has put in place measures to prevent disruption to its governance or operation approval schedule.
On Monday 2 March, the former President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, visited the EIB in Luxembourg on a joint invitation from the Bank, the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) and the Court of Auditors.