CWR-HKGFA Seminar & Drinks: Adapting and Mitigating for Accelerating Climate Threats – Redefining ICT

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CWR-HKGFA Seminar & Drinks: Adapting and mitigating for accelerating climate threats – Redefining ICT, attracted over 400 in-person and virtual attendees on 30 May 2024.

Sincere gratitude to our speakers Mr. Tsun Chen, Secretary General, HKGFA; Ms. Chaoni Huang, Managing Director, Head of Sustainable Capital Markets APAC, BNP Paribas; Executive Vice President, HKGFA; Ms. Dharisha Mirando, Lead, Finance Engagement & Water Risk Valuation, CWR; Dr. Zhai Yongping, Senior Advisor, Carbon Neutrality Strategy, Tencent; Ms. Debra Tan, Director & Head, CWR; Mr. Fei Lau, Head of Sustainability Strategy, Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited; Ms. Feng Chang, Managing Director, Head of APAC Sustainable Finance Advisory, Bank of America.

Key takeaways

  • Global ICT is booming and data centres at the heart of ICT operations are power hungry.
  • To support the future operation of data centres we need to increase the energy efficiency and significantly reduce emissions by transitioning from conventional energy sources to renewables. Rooftop solar could be a good start but further solutions and innovations are required to meet the vast needs arising from data centres. But there’s good news in China – the electricity market in China is evolving under various reforms and changes, with direct renewable energy being purchased from Western provinces, ensuring long-term and stable renewable energy sources.
  • The absence of ICT sector details in taxonomies, if not yet updated in further versions, does not imply restrictions in financing – renewable energy, green building, and energy efficiency elements can be drawn for ICT players to leverage for their decarbonisation plans.
  • Speakers encouraged banks to start with their transition framework to set requirements for the classification of green activities of the ICT sector to provide further clarity. To support supply chain decarbonisation, banks should also work with their suppliers such as data centers and renewable energy players to roll out renewable energy infrastructure and engage customers to facilitate involvement from the wider ecosystem.
  • The financing opportunities could be expedited if further clarity, calculations, and measures to quantify carbon or energy reductions in proposed projects are established.
  • Further actions suggested by CWR: spread awareness within the ecosystem to keep abreast of ICT energy and water risks; conduct stress tests for various types of water risks against different climate scenarios and align water and transition strategies; help create the ICT green taxonomy; include ICT in Scope 3 calculations and encourage disclosure.

For more details, please refer to CWR reports.

 

Replay of the event is available on HKGFA YouTube Channel:

https://youtu.be/LMdkyu1M3Z8

 

<Useful Resources>

  1. CWR: China ICT running dry? The rise of AI & climate risks amplify existing water risks faced by thirsty data centres

https://chinawaterrisk.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/04/CWR-2024-China-ICT-running-dry-The-rise-of-AI-climate-risks-amplify-existing-water-risks-faced-by-thirsty-data-centres.pdf

  1. CWR: Crude Awakening! Fast rising seas threaten seaborne oil & energy security – Spotlight: Japan & South Korea

https://chinawaterrisk.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/05/CWR-2024-Crude-Awakening-Fast-rising-seas-threaten-seaborne-oil-and-energy-security-Spotlight-Japan-and-South-Korea-FINAL.pdf

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