Skip to main content
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
Enjoy unlimited digital access
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
Canada’s most-awarded newsroom for a reason
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
// //

Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, speaks at a press conference in London on Dec. 16, 2019.

POOL New/The Associated Press

Financial services have been too slow to cut investment in fossil fuels, a delay that could lead to a sharp increase in global temperatures, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said in an interview broadcast on Monday.

Mr. Carney, set to become the United Nations’ special envoy for climate change next year when he steps down from the bank, told BBC radio that global warming could render the assets of many financial companies worthless.

Mr. Carney cited pension-fund analysis that showed the policies of companies pointed to global warming of 3.7 C to 3.8 C, compared with the 1.5-degree target outlined in the Paris Agreement on climate change.

Story continues below advertisement

“The concern is whether we will spend another decade doing worthy things but not enough … and we will blow through the 1.5 C mark very quickly,” Mr. Carney said in a radio program guest edited by teenage environmental campaigner Greta Thunberg. “As a consequence, the climate will stabilize at the much higher level.”

Mr. Carney said the financial sector had made a lot of progress in disclosing the risks to their assets from climate change, but he warned that progress was not fast enough.

He called on political leaders to effect change today and avoid selective information and spin.

“To deliver, there needs to be shared understanding about what’s necessary. [But] it is reasonable for there to be debates at the margin about where does the role of the state stop and what’s the role of markets,” Mr. Carney said.

He said there would need to be a mix of public investment and change driven by financial markets because of their power to reflect judgments about the future value of assets in a world affected by climate change.

Earlier this month, the BoE said Britain’s top banks and insurers should be tested together for the first time in 2021 to quantify the potential financial damage from climate change on their businesses.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies