New roadmap unveiled to position the UK as a global centre for nature finance and unlock sustainable growth opportunities

The City of London Corporation in collaboration with PwC today (14 September 2023) unveils a new report outlining a vision for an innovative and world leading global centre for nature finance that supports the ambition of the Global Biodiversity Framework. 

The report highlights the opportunity for the UK’s financial and professional services sector to scale up and facilitate investments in nature, showcasing its transformative potential for long-term economic impact. Mobilising financial resources for nature is integral to tackling climate change, preserving biodiversity and also creating green jobs. 

A Global Centre for Nature Finance outlines a roadmap for the UK to become a global nature finance centre, including developing innovative tools and products for measuring and investing in nature, and calling for the UK to support the development of high-integrity nature credit markets. 

Key recommendations from the report for UK Government and financial institutions to consider focus on financing nature and integrating nature into the financial system: 

1. Signalling & policy certainty: Develop sector-specific targets and roadmaps for nature restoration and protection and provide clarity on how the UK will operationalise its key commitments under the Global Biodiversity Framework 
2. Project pipeline creation: Support the development of a pipeline of sufficiently large investible opportunities, including by accelerating the supply of supporting monitoring, reporting and verification products and services. 
3. Concessional capital and financial guarantees: Develop and utilise solutions that de-risk nature-related investment opportunities. 
4. Facilitate UK nature credit markets: Lead the way in developing robust and high integrity nature credit markets. 
5. Develop long-term nature investment strategies: Financial institutions should utilise the growing suite of innovative market tools to invest in nature at scale. 
6. Build on the UK’s already world leading regulatory architecture for sustainability: Seek out opportunities to strengthen or accelerate the deployment of nature-related regulation that supports the UK Government's Roadmap to Sustainable Investing. 
7. Advance Central Bank oversight: The Bank of England and Prudential Regulation Authority should consider the necessary supervisory steps needed to ensure that the safety and soundness of regulated firms are not impacted by nature-related financial risks, while also securing an appropriate degree of protection for insurance policyholders from those risks. 

The report launch will be marked by a 60-minute webinar featuring leading experts from across the UK nature finance ecosystem. 

Speakers at the webinar include: Keith Bottomley, Deputy Policy Chairman, City of London Corporation; Emma Howard Boyd CBE, Chair of the Green Finance Institute; James King, Senior Manager, PwC Sustainability; Katie Leach, Head of Nature, Lloyds Banking Group, and Mark Manning, Strategic Policy Advisor on Sustainable Finance at Financial Conduct Authority. 

Chris Hayward, Policy Chairman of the City of London Corporation, said: 

“Our ambition is for the City of London to become the one-stop-shop for countries and companies looking for capital and expertise to meet their climate goals. The aim of this report is to develop a roadmap for the UK as a global capital for nature finance and wield a significant opportunity to drive investment in nature-related projects to transition to a global economy that is fair, decarbonised and balanced with nature. 

Emma Howard Boyd CBE, Chair of the Green Finance Institute, said: 
“London is in a prime position to become the global centre for nature finance and lead the way forward in action on nature. The UK’s support for mobilising finance for nature, which includes ambitious commitments for restoration and protection, support for the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures, quantifying nature-related risk, the development of investment readiness funds, and British farmers and landowners increasingly prioritising nature recovery, shows momentum gathering. 

“We must transition to a global economy that invests and values the natural environment, not just because it offers a solution to climate mitigation and adaptation, but because we cannot live in a world without nature and biodiversity. This is underpinned by the substantial economic risk that the UK faces as a result of nature loss.” 

David Croker, PwC Financial Services Sustainability Lead, said: 
“Businesses in the UK and across the world are becoming increasingly aware of nature-related risks within their operations and the emerging regulatory, consumer and investor response. Without nature there can be no net zero. The recommendations outlined in this report showcase the unique position of the UK to drive nature-related investment and to secure its place as a world leader in green finance.” 

Notes to editors 

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. www.cityoflondon.gov.uk 
You can read A Global Centre for Nature Finance here: https://www.theglobalcity.uk/insights/global-centre-for-nature-finance