Swedish start-up, ClimateView, has launched a significant Impact Intelligence upgrade to its ClimateOS platform to help planners unlock crucial funds for city transitions. City planners at Helsingborg in Sweden have already been using ClimateOS to visualise their climate roadmap and are using Impact Intelligence to develop a Climate Investment Plan to access funds from the EU Commission as one of the EU 100 mission cities.
ClimateView, a Swedish climate technology company that helps city planners transform climate ambition into executable and trackable climate action plans, has launched Impact Intelligence – a significant upgrade to its ClimateOS SaaS platform – to provide users with the economic data needed to unlock investment for their net zero pathways.
To secure both public and private investment, cities need to make Climate Investment Plans. These plans need to be compelling and supported with accurate and verifiable data. Impact Intelligence enables city planners to do this by calculating the economic costs and benefits of shifts to low carbon alternatives, such as increasing recycling capacity, changing energy supply or increasing public transport.
ClimateOS already helps planners in more than 50 cities, and the nation of Sweden, to develop climate action plans, execute them and measure their impact in real-time. Impact Intelligence has already successfully been trialled in the city of Helsingborg.
Tomer Shalit, Founder and CPO of ClimateView, said: “Securing finance to realise a city’s net zero targets is not an easy task for city planners. While cities might have ambitious climate goals, they typically lack the necessary analysis to be able to approach investors with their climate action plans. We have developed Impact Intelligence to help city planners get the economic and environmental analysis they need to make compelling Climate Investment Plans, which unlock public and private funding.
“It’s exciting to think of the impact this could have when you consider how much cities contribute to global greenhouse emissions. We look forward to working with new and existing clients to help cities achieve their decarbonisation targets.”
The money is there but cities can’t access it
Seventy percent of global emissions come from cities through energy use alone. Yet cities are often unprepared to develop investable climate action plans.
The World Bank calculates a global need for green urban infrastructure funding of US$4.5 to 5.4 trillion per year. Currently, only about US$384 billion of investment is being supplied annually (figures from 2017/18).
Public funds are, in many cases, available. In Europe, the EU Commission has allocated hundreds of millions of Euros for 100 Carbon Neutral Cities, conditional on them creating Climate Investment Plans.
Elsewhere, new legislation, like the US Inflation Reduction Act, provides an example of how governments are stepping up their funding commitments for green urban infrastructure.
Private finance is also crucial to drive city transitions. There are trillions of investment dollars looking for projects to drive decarbonisation (US$130 trillion alone has been promised through GFANZ by 2030). Fund managers are actively looking for sustainable investments but again cities are struggling to access these funds.
To receive public or private money, cities need to be able to show both the decarbonisation and economic impact these investments will have. Measuring the carbon abatement, economic benefits and costs of every policy in their climate action plan is no easy feat, requiring skilled data handling, systemic modelling and analytics.
The new Impact Intelligence module gives cities the tools to calculate and visualise a transition’s implementation and operational costs. It can also measure the potential carbon reduction and associated co-benefits, such as public health benefits and job creation. This allows the easy comparison and combination of multiple different projects and actions within a climate action plan.
The platform enables city planners to create Climate Investment Plans that can drive capital allocation to the most impactful net zero projects by optimising the deployment of public funding and private finance.
Municipal Green Bonds
One of the most effective ways cities can raise private funds for their climate action plans is to use a Climate Investment Plan to unlock private capital by issuing municipal green bonds that they sell to investors with the promise of a fixed pay-out after a certain time period.
However, many cities have struggled to issue green bonds and access private capital at scale. Local authorities accounted for just 0.8% of European sustainable bond issuance from 2019 to Q1 2022, raising just US$7.4 billion in 3.25 years.
Cities need to align their climate finance offerings with existing frameworks used in Capital Markets. Impact Intelligence allows city planners to easily do this by transparently providing the analysis and data, in line with CBI and ICMA frameworks, for each Climate Investment Plan.
City planners at Helsingborg have already been using ClimateOS to visualise their climate roadmap and are using Impact Intelligence to develop a Climate Investment Plan to access funds from the EU Commission as one of the EU 100 mission cities.
Using Impact Intelligence, Helsingborg is creating the first Climate Investment Plan which bridges the gap between their municipal budget and the climate investments necessary to reach net zero. To do this, the plan clarifies which investments will affect the climate, which are needed to achieve carbon neutrality and then shows the municipality where best to spend its money. The plan also includes considerations of non-municipal financing (consumer spending and other investment).
Helsingborg’s plan is enabling them to identify where to direct their investments and the actions that provide the greatest and most cost-efficient benefits.
Niklas Bäckström, Financial Controller, City of Helsingborg, said: “We need to create a Climate Investment Plan as one of the EU 100 Mission Cities. This is supposed to be a ‘systematic strategy to map out the actions, impact, cost and capital needed to reach climate neutrality by 2030.’ That’s a huge task and ClimateOS makes it possible.
“The calculation and visualisation of both the sustainable and the economic case that ClimateOS provides us for our Climate Investment Plan will surely facilitate both decision-making and future funding.”Click below to share this article