Some of the world’s biggest bodies have joined forces to help steer international climate policymaking.

The heads of the Financial Stability Board (FSB), the Network for Greening the Financial System (NGFS), the International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB) and numerous United Nations bodies were among those named to the board of a Taskforce on Net Zero Policy yesterday.

The purpose of the group, which was initially launched at COP28 last December, is to identify the most effective examples globally of climate transition laws for the private sector and local authorities, known collectively as ‘non-state actors’.

Members of the new board of trustees include Eric Usher, the head of the UN Environment Program Finance Initiative (UNEP FI), Klaas Knot, the chair of the FSB, and Jingdong Hua, vice chair of ISSB.

Hua said ISSB’s focus has turned to capacity building to support the uptake of its reporting standards, adding: “I look forward to contributing the Task Force on Net Zero Policy, including its focus on working with emerging markets and developing economies as we advance disclosure practices.”

Sabine Mauderer, a senior executive at the German Bundesbank, is also on the board in her capacity as chair of the influential green central banking network, the NGFS.

Former Canadian environmental minister, Catherine McKenna, has also been appointed. McKenna chaired a group convened in 2022 to advise UN-secretary general Antonio Guterres on how to ensure non-state actors were making credible net zero pledges.

Among its 10 recommendations, the High Level Expert Group (HLEG) proposed the establishment of “a new Task Force to help support the move from voluntary initiatives to regulated requirements for net zero”.

The Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) will host the secretariat of the Taskforce on Net Zero Policy.

Nathan Fabian, chief sustainable systems officer at the PRI, told IPE: “Investors making net zero commitments know that policy matters, so we’re interested in the state of policy implementation. That’s why we’ve agreed to play a role as the secretariat.”

Spanish Financial Markets Authority commissioner Helena Vines Fiestas, who runs the platform advising the European Commission on its sustainable finance rules, will co-chair the initiative along with Andrea Meza Murillo, the deputy executive secretary to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification.

An ‘expert group’ made up of scientists, development finance specialists and academics will present the board and the UN Secretary General with a report on current state of net-zero policies at COP29 in Azerbaijan in November.

“The report will identify and map policies in G20 countries against the HLEG criteria. It will also identify areas of good practice, challenges faced and actionable insights, including for vulnerable countries and emerging economies,” said the Taskforce in a statement, adding that it would focus on “how EMDE markets can be best served by cohesive and just transition to net zero”.

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