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ADB Vice-President Discusses Sustainable Development and Green Finance at ChosunBiz

15 February 2011: Ursula Schaefer-Preuss, Vice President, Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development, Asian Development Bank (ADB), discussed financing green growth and reshaping the sustainable development paradigm during her keynote address to the ChosunBiz Green Finance Forum, on 15 February 2011, in Seoul, Republic of Korea.

She indicated that ADB is now financing green growth on a massive scale and that the adoption in 2010 of its climate change strategic priorities provided the linchpin for this. She emphasized: greater investments in clean energy, reaching US$1.7 billion in 2010; sustainable transport and urban development; and the support for building climate resilience in the water and agriculture sectors.

Schaefer-Preuss noted the promising opportunity to design, build and operate infrastructure on the principle of green growth using green finance. However, she stressed the urgent need to resolve the question of how best to use limited public sector funds to leverage more private capital in low-carbon and climate adaptation investments. In that regard, she highlighted that financing partnerships are critical at both the technology innovation and deployment stages, and that the use of public funding is required for early research and development and to stimulate the movement of venture capital towards climate change and clean energy investments.

In closing her address, Schaefer-Preuss introduced ADB initiatives designed to make the low-carbon, green choice more feasible for developing countries, such as the Asia Solar Energy Initiative to catalyze greater levels of solar energy investment and remove the barriers to commercial-scale deployment, and the Quantum Leap in Wind Initiative, promoting the deployment of wind power in Asia.  She also discussed ADB projects aimed at catalyzing the resources and experience of the private sector through innovative financing approaches, including the Asia Climate Change and Clean Venture Initiative. [ADB Press Release]