China to make disclosure of climate, carbon emission information mandatory

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China aims to make disclosing climate and carbon emission information disclosure mandatory in the future, after first testing it with some commercial banks and listed companies, central bank Governor Yi Gang said.

“Our goal is to make a uniformed disclosure standard, and in the future, we will go in the direction of mandatory disclosure of climate-related information, Yi said Friday during a panel discussion at the Green Swan conference hosted by the Bank for International Settlements.

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President Xi Jinping’s pledge to make China carbon neutral by 2060 means the world’s top-polluting nation will need a drastic shift from fossil fuel to clean energy. The People’s Bank of China is seeking to contribute to that change by developing green finance and addressing related financial risks.

To cut emissions, the country will need an estimated 2.2 trillion yuan ($343 billion) of investment every year by 2030, and the figure will rise to 3.9 trillion yuan for the three decades leading to 2060, Yi said in April.

The PBOC has conducted stress tests to assess climate risks and provided policy incentives for banks to extend loans for green projects, according to Yi. It is also assessing the impact on inflation forecasts from the economy’s transition to green energy, he said.

The PBOC will publish the stress test results in the future, according to Yi. The review is part of broader testing that the central bank plans to conduct on all 4,024 banks this year to gauge their readiness to deal with potential shocks.

Yi also said China’s green bond taxonomy is about 80 percent similar to a separate one produced by the European Union. The PBOC and the EU are working on converging their taxonomies for green investment, with the aim of publishing a jointly recognized classification standard by the end of this year, he said in March.

The PBOC is tasked to ensure the country’s transition to green energy is a smooth one, avoiding “sudden moves that may trigger crises, Yi said.

China and other large developing countries need to set an emission cap and clear roadmaps as soon as possible, in order to show their determination and ensure their promises will be delivered, former PBOC governor Zhou Xiaochuan said in a speech earlier at the conference. China also must rely on more investment in research and development to cut emission, he said.

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