Banks, Climate Risk and Financial Stability

Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance, Vol. 27 Issue: 2, (2019) pp.243-262

Posted: 17 Jun 2019

Date Written: May 28, 2019


This paper quantifies the loan exposure to elevated environmental risk sectors of the banking system in the USA, EU, China, Japan and Switzerland in US$1.6tn, broadly in line with the findings of Battiston et al. (2017) and Weyzig et al. (2014). This paper also explores prudential policy approaches and tools. In addition to the lack of taxonomy of “brown” vs “green,” the paper identifies the limitations to assess the risks involved in the transition to a low-carbon economy: supervisory reports that do not make full use of the existing international statistical framework (e.g. EU COREP and FINREP); lack of harmonized reporting requirements of environmental risks; lack of credit registers as tools to perform carbon stress-testing; and supervisors’ governance framework that do not internalize environmental risks (e.g. proposed revision of the Basel Core Principles of Banking Supervision). As per the stress-testing, the paper presents two examples. The paper presents a framework of analysis for the regulatory treatment of climate-related risks. The author identifies two critical elements of such framework if prudential regulation of environmental risks is to be considered: the consideration or not of climate risk as credit risk and the impact of environmental risks over probabilities of default over the entire business cycle.

Keywords: Environment, Governance, Regulation, Banking

JEL Classification: G18, G21, Q50

Suggested Citation

Nieto, Maria J., Banks, Climate Risk and Financial Stability (May 28, 2019). Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance, Vol. 27 Issue: 2, (2019) pp.243-262, Available at SSRN:

Maria J. Nieto (Contact Author)

Banco de España ( email )

Alcala 50
Madrid 28014

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