Mark Carney the Bank of England (BoE) governor has warned companies that their assets could become “worthless” if they do not make changes due to the climate crisis.
Carney said the financial sector is “not moving fast enough” in curbing investment into the fossil fuel sector.
In an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme Carney said, “The concern is whether we will spend another decade doing worthy things but not enough… and we will blow through the 1.5C mark very quickly.
“As a consequence, the climate will stabilise at the much higher level.”
In March 2020 Carney is to step down from the BoE and is to become the United Nation’s special envoy for climate change in 2020 being paid a token salary of $1 per annum.
He has called on world leaders to change, he said, “To deliver, there needs to be shared understanding about what’s necessary.
“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.”
Carney warned, “If we were to burn all those oil and gases there’s no way, we would meet carbon budgets.
“Up to 80% of coal assets will be stranded, [and] up to half of developed oil reserves.”
He added, “A question for every company, every financial institution, every asset manager, pension fund or insurer: What’s your plan?”
Speaking about extreme weather events he described climate change as a “tragedy on the horizon” and the world will witness “more extreme weather events.”
He gave a stark warning, that “by the time that the extreme events become so prevalent and so obvious it will be too late to do anything about it.”
Addressing climate change sceptics, Carney said, “We can’t afford on this one to have selective information, spin, misdirection… it needs to be absolutely clear because we are all in on it.”