Technology, Investment

Technology and climate change: How big is the investment opportunity?

24 February 2020

Technology and climate change: How big is the investment opportunity?

Source: UBS

Governments and corporations have made bold commitments to tackle climate change. Initiatives such as the Paris Agreement aim to limit the rise in global temperatures to less than two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels by the end of the century.

Numerous bodies of research suggest that failing to cap temperature rises could have major economic and social consequences. The European Commission’s JRC Science for Policy Report concludes that consumption by EU citizens could fall by EUR 240bn every year at the end of this century if global temperatures exceed pre-industrial levels by more than three degrees Celsius.

Should temperatures climb in an unmitigated way (as predicted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s RCP 8.5 scenario of an average 0.04 degree Celsius rise in average global temperatures every year until 2100), global real GDP per head could drop by 7% and by 10.5% for the US, based on an August 2019 working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research.

And the World Bank Group finds that, without immediate climate action, another 100 million people could sink into poverty by 20303. Technological solutions and disruptive forces lie at the heart of preventing (and even reversing) climate change. They are also central to unlocking major investment opportunities for corporations and investors.

In this paper, we explore:

  1. The size of the investment opportunity, including the investment themes that help to counter further climate change and may even contribute to reversing it.

  2. The technologies with wider implications for driving positive changes from businesses, individuals, investors, and financial institutions to avert climate-damaging activities and/or reverse climate change.
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