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New Investor Survey From The Rockefeller Foundation and BCG Suggests Growing Investor Optimism for Climate Finance

Responses from over 100 private equity, venture capital, philanthropic, government, and development finance leaders outlines emerging trends in investments

NEW YORK | December 1, 2023 ― At the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 28), The Rockefeller Foundation and BCG released an analysis of climate finance trends based on inputs from over 100 private equity, venture capital, philanthropic, government, and development finance leaders. The report, “What Investors’ Attitudes Reveal About the Future of Climate Finance” provides a detailed practitioner perspective on the state of the climate finance market today and builds on last year’s Climate Finance Gap report which found that only 16%  of climate financing requirements had been met.

“Current climate financing falls significantly short of what’s needed. But investors are acknowledging the urgency of this moment,” said Maria Kozloski, Senior Vice President of Innovative Finance at The Rockefeller Foundation. “As we head to COP28, leaders must work together to address funding gaps, innovate diverse solutions, and enhance accessibility to blended finance.”

Key findings

  • Investors say climate finance is on the upswing globally, especially in Latin America and Asia. Investors project climate finance to grow in every region globally through 2024. They expect large markets such as North America and Europe to “grow steadily.” And once lagging markets such as Latin America and Asia are now “about to take off.”
  • There is strong investor support for every mitigation theme. Financiers from across the public and private sectors believe climate finance opportunities exist across all major themes and markets. Power is especially attractive, with 72% of thematic investors looking to actively originate in solar, 60% in smart grid technologies and 575 in utility-scale storage. Industrial and building decarbonization and transport are also gaining wide interest.
  • Nature-based solutions (NbS) may be overcoming commercial viability concerns. North America, Latin America and Europe are key focus areas. Over 60% of NbS-focused investors said they are actively originating in North America and nearly half (48%) are doing so in Europe and in Latin America.
  • Adaptation and resilience (A&R) needs more traction, but investors in advanced economies are finally taking note. Many developing economies continue to lead the way in climate finance investment in A&R. Of the investors focused on this theme, 50% are actively originating in India, 45% in developing economies in Asia and 42% in Sub-Saharan Africa. Yet, Europe and North America are beginning to catch up and rival these areas: roughly 40% of thematic investors indicate they are seeking to finance A&R opportunities in these two regions.
  • Long-standing deployment challenges and recent macroeconomic headwinds are increasing project risk. Almost half of investors (46%) rated financial market dynamics and macro-economics as a key challenge. And while commercial and concessionary investors want to collaborate with each other, frictions remain, with commercial investors desiring more help in de-risking climate finance initiatives and concessionary investors struggling with a lack of investible projects.
  • Subsidies and incentives are the strongest tailwinds for climate finance, but slow and complex roll out has left open questions for investors. More than three-quarters (77%) of respondents pointed to financial policy interventions such as subsidies and tax incentives as a top tailwind, but many cautioned that roll-out and execution have been slower and more complex than hoped for.

“This research has given us an insiders perspective on the latest in climate-related finance and, while the industry is far from mature, practitioners consistently told us they see a compelling economic basis for investments across mitigation themes, and that they’re seeing opportunities in markets we hadn’t tapped into before” said Veronica Chau, Partner and Director of Sustainable Finance & Social Impact at BCG. “Given the momentum building across sectors and regions, it’s more important than ever for commercial and concessionary finance sectors to come together and start to close the climate financing gap.”

The Rockefeller Foundation and BCG conducted their survey in October 2023, soliciting responses from 47 fund managers, 16 asset managers, 7 asset owners, 11 banks, 5 corporate investment teams, 13 multilateral investment banks and development finance institutions, 14 philanthropies and foundations, 6 government entities and 13 others whose roles cut across these sectors.

Read the study here.

About The Rockefeller Foundation

The Rockefeller Foundation is a pioneering philanthropy built on collaborative partnerships at the frontiers of science, technology, and innovation that enable individuals, families, and communities to flourish. We make big bets to promote the well-being of humanity. Today, we are focused on advancing human opportunity and reversing the climate crisis by transforming systems in food, health, energy, and finance. For more information, sign up for our newsletter at and follow us on X @RockefellerFdn.

About Boston Consulting Group

Boston Consulting Group partners with leaders in business and society to tackle their most important challenges and capture their greatest opportunities. BCG was the pioneer in business strategy when it was founded in 1963. Today, we work closely with clients to embrace a transformational approach aimed at benefiting all stakeholders—empowering organizations to grow, build sustainable competitive advantage, and drive positive societal impact. Our diverse, global teams bring deep industry and functional expertise and a range of perspectives that question the status quo and spark change. BCG delivers solutions through leading-edge management consulting, technology and design, and corporate and digital ventures. We work in a uniquely collaborative model across the firm and throughout all levels of the client organization, fueled by the goal of helping our clients thrive and enabling them to make the world a better place.

Media Contacts

Wyatt Goodwin
The Rockefeller Foundation

Anca Webber
Boston Consulting Group