UBS white paper: Financial sector can catalyse decarbonisation of the real economy


Zurich Nov.10, 2022

Authored by UBS’s Sustainability and Impact Institute, ‘The green inflection point: Driving decarbonisation of the real economy,’ explores the role of finance in further ‘greening’ the economy.

  • Financial institutions have an opportunity to increase constructive engagement with emission-intensive sectors, but further development of frameworks, standards and collaborative efforts are needed.
  • Innovative funding approaches can help bring relevant stakeholders together to ensure that finance is not a barrier to decarbonization efforts.
  • This white paper is published to coincide with Decarbonization Day at COP27.

Zurich, November 10, 2022 – The UBS Sustainability and Impact Institute today released its latest white paper, ‘The green inflection point: Driving decarbonisation of the real economy’, exploring where and how the financial sector can be most impactful in facilitating decarbonisation at significant scale in the years to come. While companies, investors, asset managers and financial firms now recognize the value and importance in transitioning toward a collective net zero future, more can and must be done.

Deepening collaboration across sectors and stakeholders will help develop the necessary frameworks, regulations, education and incentives for scalable action. By showcasing three emission-intensive global corporations that are leading these transformations through their ability and willingness to create novel approaches to sustainability-related challenges, the paper addresses how governments, corporations, financial firms, investors and consumers can work together to help industries accelerate their own transitions towards a low carbon economy.

Mike Ryan, Head of UBS’s Sustainability and Impact Institute: “The first steps have been taken toward decarbonization but we’re now at a critical inflection point. The next green wave is on the horizon and further establishing and developing effective collaborative frameworks, targeted engagement, partnerships and innovative financial approaches will be essential if we are to capture the opportunities and achieve real, measurable and positive impact in the climate transition.”

The paper concludes that the financial sector has an opportunity to create partnerships, innovate impactful and exciting financing options, mobilize capital in all its forms and drive effective solutions to move decarbonisation of the real economy more quickly and more efficiently.

About the UBS Sustainability and Impact Institute
The UBS Sustainability and Impact Institute was established in September 2021 and is headed by Mike Ryan, Divisional Vice Chairman for Global Wealth Management, and formerly GWM Chief Investment Officer for the Americas. The Institute aims at creating best-in-class sustainability and impact thought leadership. It aspires to play a leading role in shaping the industry through engagement with partners and standard setters. Its recent publications include white papers on how we can use the principles of philanthropy and impact finance to close the funding gap for the transition to a more sustainable future, and on how the financial world might contribute to the protection and restoration of our planet’s natural capital.

About UBS
UBS convenes the global ecosystem for investing, where people and ideas are connected and opportunities brought to life, and provides financial advice and solutions to wealthy, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as to private clients in Switzerland. UBS offers investment solutions, products and impactful thought leadership, is the leading global wealth manager, provides large-scale and diversified asset management, focused investment banking capabilities, and personal and corporate banking services in Switzerland. The firm focuses on businesses that have a strong competitive position in their target markets, are capital efficient and have an attractive long-term structural growth or profitability outlook.

UBS is present in all major financial centers worldwide. It has offices in more than 50 regions and locations, with about 30 % of its employees working in the Americas, 29 % in Switzerland, 20 % in the rest of Europe, the Middle East and Africa and 21 % in Asia Pacific. UBS Group AG employs more than 72000 people around the world. Its shares are listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).