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Momentum grows in development of new global ocean finance ecosystem

  • Commitments from leading international financial institutions and organisations to further the design of the Sea Change Impact Financing Facility
  • Call for interested parties to plug into the open architecture

Lisbon, Portugal 28 June 2022 – There is growing momentum behind the design of a new global ocean finance ecosystem with new partners stepping up to work on its development, it was announced today at the UN Ocean Conference in Lisbon.

The Ocean Risk and Resilience Action Alliance (ORRAA) is spearheading a means of channelling significant investment into coastal and ocean natural capital.

The Sea Change Impact Financing Facility (SCIFF) aims to drive at least USD$1 billion of investment into coastal and ocean ecosystems by 2030, a springboard from which to mobilise at least USD$2.5 billion of broader finance capital into this space. 

It takes a systemic approach to building this new financing architecture – creating an investment ecosystem for sustainable initiatives, developing at speed and at scale, assembling from individual projects to aligned platforms, and engaging investors and insurers. 

The development of the SCIFF was announced at the One Ocean Summit hosted by France in February. It is now attracting more high-profile support from financial and insurance institutions and international organisations.

Our lead global partners Deutsche Bank and AXA, as well as BNP Paribas, are supporting the development of the SCIFF, along with the Commonwealth Secretariat through its Blue Charter initiative, IUCN and the Insurance Development Forum represented by its members Milliman and WTW.  Additional partners such as Blue Finance, Sea Green and Investable Oceans have also come on board. The Asian Development Bank will collaborate with the SCIFF to scale blue investments in Asia and the Pacific.

“The creation of this new ecosystem, together with ORRAA’s investments into scalable projects with the prospect of bankable returns, will enable the deployment of billions of dollars into nature-positive coastal and ocean resilience over the next decade,” said Karen Sack, Executive Director of ORRAA. “The SCIFF will focus on new and existing impactful investable opportunities, helping to attract additional sources of capital and providing novel opportunities for concessional capital and risk transfer tools to accelerate investments into coastal and ocean resilience. Now we are looking for other parties who are interested in plugging into the SCIFF.”   

“Now we are looking for other parties who are interested in plugging into the SCIFF.”

Karen Sack, Executive Director of ORRAA

The SCIFF is composed of three core integrated components:  

  • A Blue Resilience Clearing House (“BRCH”) – a framework “marketplace” drawing on existing and emerging platforms to identify and select sustainable projects and effective project developers. It will link them to risk management expertise and potential investment pathways.  The BRCH will put specific guardrails in place to ensure that the supply and demand for such projects meets specific selection criteria and standards.  
  • The Finance Umbrella will sit at the core of the SCIFF.  Working with ORRAA’s finance sector partners, it will support a range of new investment formats including funds, facilities, and mechanisms to attract significant funding from experienced investors. It will focus on investment opportunities, such as catalytic finance into blue infrastructure projects, co-investment alongside existing impact funds into sustainable blue economy opportunities, and capital market transactions including blue bonds and resilience finance.   
  • The Risk Transfer Platform (“RTP”) will focus on providing risk assessment standards, as well as existing and innovative risk transfer solutions, for coastal and ocean projects identified and/or developed by the BRCH or under the Finance Umbrella. Its aim will be to better enable investment by facilitating the transfer of risks which the project or investor is not willing to cover, to those better positioned to bear them in the private insurance sector. 

Karen Sack, Executive Director, ORRAA, speaking at the members meeting, part of the UN Ocean Conference, Lisbon, 27 June 2022