Conversations on Climate

Season 3: Episode 5 – in conversation with Sean Kidney

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In this episode of the Conversations on Climate Podcast, we are delighted to sit down with Sean Kidney who is Co-founder and CEO of Climate Bonds Initiative to discuss the importance of green bonds and financing the transition to a low-carbon economy. 

This conversation highlights the urgency of addressing climate change and the potential for green bonds to help fund renewable energy projects, improve energy efficiency, and promote sustainable agriculture. 

Kidney emphasises the need for clear standards and regulations to ensure the integrity of the green bond market and prevent greenwashing. This video makes a compelling case for the critical role that green bonds can play in financing the transition to a more sustainable future.

With the global bond market worth $130 trillion, green and sustainable bonds currently make up just 4 trillion of that total. However, kidney believes that this market has the potential to grow at least ten times in the next decade, making green bonds the biggest asset class in the world. Watch this video to learn more about the role of green bonds in financing a sustainable future.

“We are learning to be adults when the planet needs us to be adults… if we do grow up, we become the consciousness of Gaia. If we don’t, we’re toast.”

More About the Climate Bonds Initiative 

Their science-based taxonomy has certified $300 billion in climate bonds across 16 sectors and 20 instrument types, and they have $34 trillion in assets represented at board level.

Some of the insights in this episode include:

Climate as a species-level opportunity (if we can take it)

The trillion-dollar question: are green bonds growing fast enough?

The power of pension funds – and why they’re finally waking up

How emerging green markets can solve the West’s demographic timebomb

Eat quinoa, not corn (and other lessons from green bond taxonomy)

Climate resilience funding: many flavours of gelato!

Last-mile CCUS, the Icelandic volcano way

Should we just cancel COP? Sean gets stuck in!

Climate lessons from Marx, memes and the KKK

Why turning the world’s supertanker is a systems game


“It’s never too late till it really is too late…this is really about how we manage the planet…we ended up becoming stewards of the earth…humans affect everything.”

“… you’re thinking, what are we doing?!  I’m going to say, how can you not be passionate when you’re looking at your future corroding before your eyes in the science?”

“So my belief is that we need to change the financial system to be future-fit to meet our needs and, of course, that means bonds that are green will become the biggest asset class.”



Conversations on Climate is a podcast brought to you by United Renewables

We bring together the best minds from academia and business, to offer their experience and expertise in the face of climate change –from game theorists to corporate diplomats, and oil industry veterans to micro-algae entrepreneurs.

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If you enjoyed this episode you might like to:

watch episode 14 with Dr Marcel Olbert – Money Talks – ESG, Taxation, and the Future of Climate

watch episode 9 with James Samworth – The Energy Transition

watch season 2 episode 20 – in conversation with CT Green Bank


Find out more about United Renewables and our CEO Chris Caldwell.

United Renewables Home Page 

Chris Caldwell – Linkedin Profile