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Central bankers debate tackling climate change

AS FAR AS interest rates are concerned, the new boss of the European Central Bank (ECB), Christine Lagarde, seems largely in agreement with Mario Draghi, her predecessor. Where she seems to differ is in wanting the bank to be greener. On December 2nd she told European parliamentarians that a planned review of its monetary-policy strategy should take in the impact of climate change. Other central bankers, too, are going green. In recent months ratesetters from Sydney to San Francisco have opined on the impact of climate change on economic and financial stability. The subject has long preoccupied Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England, who is soon to become the UN’s climate envoy.So far central banks have focused on the impact of climate risk on the financial system. But activists argue that, just as central bankers saved the global economy during the financial crisis, so too must they tackle the next emergency by shifting capital away from polluters and towards greener uses. Europe’s technocrats seem willing to consider the idea. Others caution that it should be a job for politicians instead.
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