Governments are under-utilising taxation as a tool to curb the environmental consequences of energy use, foregoing revenue and weakening their attack on the principal source of greenhouse gas emissions responsible for climate change and air pollution.
World leaders are facing a fundamental dilemma: take strong action to address the risks associated with climate change, or see the ability to limit this threat slip from their grasp. COP21 happening late 2015 in Paris is our chance for positive action.
In this defining year for climate change policy and low-carbon investment, OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría welcomed senior government officials and key actors in financing green infrastructure investment for a targeted discussion under the Chatham House Rule.
The policy message is clear: more stringent environmental policies, when properly designed, can be introduced to benefit the environment without any loss in productivity, allowing new, cleaner technologies and business models to develop.
Limiting climate change to 2°C requires a major shift in investment patterns towards low-carbon, climate-resilient options. The challenge for policy makers is to ensure that clear, consistent and coherent signals are being sent to investors, producers and consumers alike.
Climate-related disasters have inflicted increasingly high losses on developing countries, and with climate change, these losses are likely to worsen. Improving country resilience against climate risks is therefore vital for achieving poverty reduction and economic development goals.