Green Recovery and Finance for Sustainable Infrastructure

This white paper addresses how public and private sector stakeholders can support the funding necessary to spur a green recovery by sufficiently funding the early stages of infrastructure project development (pre-development) to achieve sustainable outcomes.

Integrating sustainable infrastructure investments into government investments in infrastructure, especially with a specific focus on expected stimulus packages to mitigate the economic downturn from the COVID-19 pandemic, is key to building a sustainable and resilient future. The International Energy Agency notes that ‘governments have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reboot their economies and bring a wave of new employment opportunities while accelerating a shift to a more resilient, low carbon, energy future’.1 However, only 3-5% of an estimated $12-15 trillion in international COVID-19 stimulus is currently committed to green initiatives.2 The Coalition for Urban Transitions (CUT) found3 that only 7% of the total stimulus measured in the Green Stimulus Index has gone to sectors that are relevant for cities, such as energy, transport, and waste. Only 16% of the stimulus going to these sectors is green. EY Research for the European Climate Foundation4 identified 2,000 shovel-ready projects across Europe that could support a green recovery. 1.2.2 Securing success through pre-development funding A key strategy to ensure sustainable outcomes from stimulus efforts and other planned infrastructure investments is to integrate pre-development funding for municipal, state, and federal projects, as well as private sector project developers and multinational finance institutions. A study of US. stimulus funding after the 2008 recession found that ‘investing in timely pre-development funding for local projects’ would better support a pipeline of shovel-ready projects.

Green Recovery and Finance for Sustainable Infrastructure