Giving Compass' Take:

• Brookings examines the state of sustainable infrastructure investment to help address climate change, and why more renewable energy funding is needed.

• One obstacle cited in mobilizing capital in this effort is the amount of risk involved. How can philanthropists address this problem and finance bolder ideas?

• Here's more on how we can step up investments to tackle climate change.

A focus on the role of private capital in addressing climate change by financing sustainable infrastructure is vital. As the 2014 New Climate Economy Report highlighted, the world needs to build around $94 trillion in new infrastructure out to 2030. This would be equivalent to a doubling of the world’s capital stock, with over two-thirds built in developing countries. Around 70 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions come from carbon-intensive infrastructure. As a 2015 study by Amar Bhattacharya and colleagues highlights, unless the new infrastructure is sustainable — featuring low carbon energy, energy efficient buildings, and mass transit systems — the world will lock itself into a high carbon pathway.

A 2017 OECD study found that investing in sustainable infrastructure can be good for growth and the climate. Building renewable energy instead of coal-fired power stations can reduce air pollution and lead to better health outcomes. Building compact cities with access to mass transit affects access to other key services such as health and education.

Read the full article about sustainable infrastructure to address climate change by Joshua P. Meltzer at Brookings.