On September 11, 2019, bettervest—a crowdfunding platform for sustainable investments—and ICLEI (Local Governments for Sustainability)—a global network of more than 1750 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development—launched a strategic partnership that will bring much-needed capital to promising climate action projects at the local and regional level.
The partnership pairs bettervest’s innovative crowdfunding approach with ICLEI’s Transformative Actions Program (TAP), which helps cities, towns and regions to prepare bankable, impactful infrastructure renewal projects to access climate finance and attract investment.
TAP is managed by the ICLEI World Secretariat, and aims to catalyze and improve capital flows to cities, towns and regions, thereby accelerating low-to-no emission and climate-resilient development to support national ambitions through transformative local infrastructure projects. The TAP serves as 1) a project pipeline, 2) a project preparation facility, 3) a platform and 4) an advocacy instrument to show the demand and diversity of locally identified priority projects to accelerate climate and energy action. By using the TAP, projects with proven transformative impact can access to tailor-made services offered by ICLEI and TAP Partners during the whole project cycle from early stage to develop robust concepts, with a view to matchmaking with project preparation facilities and potential investors.
“By joining forces with ICLEI, we aim to leverage the potential of private finance to facilitate effective regional and local climate change mitigation efforts,” said Marilyn Heib, CEO of bettervest GmbH. “The TAP provides a unique access to high-impact, low-risk projects across the globe. bettervest can offer these projects unbureaucratic and accessible loans while providing impact investment opportunities and enabling citizens to partake in shaping the cities of tomorrow.”
Using the TAP pipeline for projects, bettervest will mobilize its network of individual investors to bridge the climate financing gap. The Transformative Actions Program, with partners like bettervest, helps local governments to access the capital necessary to fund low emission climate resilient projects. A serious gap exists between how much money could be profitably invested in locally-implemented projects, and how much money is actually being invested in local projects. While the International Finance Corporation estimates that while there is about $22.3 trillion (IFC 2016) in “climate-smart investment potential” worldwide, the global management firm McKinsey reports that only $3 trillion has actually being invested (2018).
“bettervest’s partnership with ICLEI through the Transformative Actions Program means that individual investors will now have the chance to bring to life critically important climate projects around the world,” said Maryke van Staden, Director of ICLEI’s carbonn Center. “This partnership connects local governments, who are best positioned to develop projects that can have a significant impact, with the power of crowd-sourced funding. This partnership shows how we must rewrite the rules to truly address the problem of climate change.”
The TAP is based on partnerships that connect the goals of diverse stakeholders into one coherent value chain for developing robust, transformative and bankable projects that will accelerate low-to-no emission and climate-resilient development. By focusing on unlocking capital for local climate projects, bettervest and ICLEI are looking to show how creative financing from all levels is needed to broadly implement effective local climate action initiatives.
The partnership helps to support Goal 13 (Climate Action), Goal 11 (Sustainable Cities and Human Settlements) as well as Goal 17 (Partnerships for the Goals) of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The strategic partnership is also intended to raise awareness regarding the importance of locally-driven solutions to combat climate change, and the challenge of financing local climate action projects.
Photo of Frankfurt, Germany via Adobe Stock.