The government has announced a raft of fresh initiatives designed to cement the UK's position as a global green finance hub, unveiling plans for a new clean tech venture fund, fresh green finance standards and wider promotional activities for the fast-expanding sector.
As part of Green GB Week, Energy and Clean Growth Minister Claire Perry today attended a series of events in The City of London designed to highlight the growing influence of the UK's green finance industry.
The events come as the government today launched a Request for Proposals for fund managers to run a new clean tech-focused venture capital fund.
Dubbed the Clean Growth Fund, the initiative will combine up to £20m of government investment alongside at least £20m in private funding. The government said the aim of the new fund was to catalyse the clean tech market and help early stage businesses "bridge the valley of death" between R&D and commercialisation.
The government also announced the British Standards Institution (BSI) is to develop two new UK-led but internationally relevant Publicly Available Specification (PAS) documents for Sustainable Finance, which are designed to "increase confidence in, and understanding of, sustainable investments and activities".
A new Strategic Advisory Group is to be chaired by Peter Young, trustee and chair of the Green Purposes Company, and will provide strategic direction to BSI's wider Sustainable Finance Standardisation Programme.
The standards will be accompanied by a £60m government-backed programme to promote green finance best practices globally.
The UK Partnering for Accelerated Climate Transitions (PACT) initiative is to provide technical advice to governments around the world, with the first projects aimed at strengthening green finance collaboration between the UK and China.
The work with China will particularly focus on developing harmonised standards for green bonds, analysis of green asset performance, advice on implementing the recommendations of the Taskforce on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFDs), and supporting the development of a new UK-China Green Finance Centre, the government said.
"Decarbonising the global economy is a multi-trillion pound opportunity," said Perry. "For decades the UK has been recognised as a leading financial centre and today we're primed to enhance our already world-leading green finance sector, making sure the bulk of this investment flows through the city of London.
"To mark our first ever Green GB Week, we're spending £20m to help create a new investment fund that will provide a shot in the arm for growing UK clean technology start-ups, and creating new standards to streamline the business environment for green finance in the UK."
The government also announced it will publish a new Green Finance Strategy in Spring next year, chair the new International Standards Organisation Technical Committee on Sustainable Finance and stage a national green finance conference and at least five regional workshops with local authorities, cities, investors and civil society to help drive investments in local projects.