The City Investment Imperative for Net Zero

DATE: 3 November, 2021

LOCATION: Virtually or in-person at ICLEI Pavilion to Multilevel Action Pavilion, Hall 4, Scottish Events Campus (Blue Zone UNFCCC COP26)

START TIME: 10:00 am END TIME: 11:30 am

The Net Zero agenda will require significant up-front investment to transition our existing carbon intensive system, such as how we heat our homes and how we travel, to a lower carbon alternative.

The UK Cities Climate Investment Commission (UK CCIC), a partnership between Connected Places Catapult, Core Cities and London Councils, adopts a novel approach to addressing the challenge of financing Net Zero in major cities across the UK.    

On the Sustainable Finance Day at COP26, the UK CCIC presents its findings on the up-front investment needed to address the Core Cities’ & London boroughs’ Net Zero pledges.   

Through new research delivered by the UKCCIC, we estimate that approximately £200 billion (in a range of £125bn-£416bn) must be invested to achieve Net Zero across London and UK Core Cities. This is beyond the financing capacity of the public sector alone.      

This event will bring together the investment sector with cities to discuss the opportunities and limitations for private finance to play a leading role in accelerating Net Zero infrastructure investment across commercial real-estate, housing, transport, renewable electricity generation, waste management and other green infrastructure.      

Who Should Attend  

  • Banks and other Financial Institutions  
  • Investment funds & companies interested in decarbonisation
  • Local Authorities and City Leaders  
  • Central and Regional Government   
  • Large and small businesses, particularly operating in the real estate utilities, transport  and low carbon technologies  
  • International organisations active on climate change and sustainable development  
  • Community organisations and NGOs who are interested in supporting borough action on  the green recovery  
  • Media organisations.  


  • Connected Places Catapult   
  • Core Cities   
  • London Councils  


Mathias Cormann

Secretary General


Helen Whately MP

Exchequer Secretary

United Kingdom Treasury

Prof Greg Clark CBE


UK Cities Climate Investment Commission

Catherine McGuiness

Chair of Policy & Resources

City of London Corporation

Georgia Gould


London Councils

Shirley Rodrigues

Deputy Mayor

Environment & Energy, London  

Marvin Rees


Bristol City Council



10.00 – 10.10

Chair’s Welcome: The investment imperative for Net Zero infrastructure 

Although there is widespread acknowledgement of the scale of the challenge associated with  achieving Net Zero across the UK’s cities, far less consideration has been given to how the  necessary infrastructure will be practically financed and implemented. The allocation of  investment finance is a crucial component of this delivery and has been prioritised by UK CCIC  as warranting focussed attention in the run up to COP26, and beyond. In addition, the  collaboration within cities between public bodies, the private sector, and local communities  will be important for successful delivery of Net Zero infrastructure within UK cities, and the  subsequent attraction of investment capital at scale. 

Prof Greg Clark CBE, Chair, UK Cities Climate Investment Commission

10.10 – 10.25

Keynote: The wider benefits of Net Zero investment: The OECD Perspective

Mathias Cormann, Secretary General, OECD

10.25 – 10.40

Keynote: How do we fund Development Costs?

Helen Whately MP, Exchequer Secretary to United Kingdom Treasury

10.40 – 11.15

Panel Discussion

Catherine McGuiness, Chair of Policy & Resources, City of London Corporation

Georgia Gould, Chair, London Councils

Shirley Rodrigues, Deputy Mayor Environment & Energy, London

Marvin Rees, Mayor, Bristol City Council

Moderator: Prof Greg Clark CBE, Chair, UK Cities Climate Investment Commission and Connected Places Catapult

11.15 – 11.30