Passerelles n°1

Passerelles n°1
  • Title: Microfinance and Climate Change
  • Date: April 2015
  • Language: English


Also available in French and in Spanish

Download Passerelles n°1



Executive Summary

Urgency to act for future generations

The conclusions made by researchers are alarming: it is necessary and urgent to adopt measures curbing global warming. The consequences of our footprint will otherwise become irreversible and ultimately disrupt the planet’s natural and societal balance.

These findings directly call to mind the definition of sustainable development, according to which all development is sustainable if it is able to meet the requirements of today's society without compromising future generations’ ability to meet the requirements of tomorrow (see: Brundtland Report).

Linking the profitable to the sustainable

In the endeavour to improve people’s lives, in developing countries, how does one achieve economic and social prosperity, while remaining fully aware of the ecological footprint?

Microfinance represents an alternative in economic development, sometimes the only one people in precarious situations and those suffering from other vulnerabilities may have. It therefore makes sense that a sector promoting the development of the less fortunate should ask itself how this can be done, both profitably but also sustainably?

MFIs offering the “tripple bottom line” engage in the way of being both financially viable and maintaining a positive social and environmental impact. The last few years have seen the birth of a plethora of green-microfinance initiatives.

ADA supports MFIs whose priority is providing access to green-energy inclusive-finance in rural areas. The results of these projects are detailed on our website.

The role of investment funds in the green economy

Number 1 of Passerelles focuses on this vast topic without having the ambition of being exhaustive. After a brief introduction to the subject, we start from a macro perspective to finalise on field experiences. Taking as its starting point the main issues that relate to climate change, an article written by Marc Bichler, Luxembourg’s Ambassador to the issues of climate change, provides an overview of the global agenda on this issue. On from the major issues, the author raises the point of financing the activities of a green economy and the role investment funds play in the financing process.

A second article, written by Juana (ADA), Marion Allet (PAMIGA) and Davide Forcella (Masters Student at the European Microfinancial Program and Researcher in Physics at the ULB), analyses a sample of MFIs offering green products and/or services. The article focuses on Central America and this is put in perspective with the research conducted by Marion Allet in her doctoral thesis.

The final part of the publication reports on the experience two MFIs have gained in the field: Fundecooperación, which is operative in Central America, and CARD, working in Southeast Asia.

To further knowledge and understanding of green microfinance, ADA organised the 31st Midi de la Microfinance around the same topic as this issue of Passerelles. During the conference, as well as their field experience, our guests, who are experts in microfinance and green energy, discussed difficulties encountered and solutions.

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