Solar panels

Shifting Financial Flows in Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia is the new economic engine of the world. Despite possessing extraordinary renewable energy resources, current policies and investment decisions mean that most of its growing energy demand will be met by an 80 percent increase in coal-fired power generation by 2040, resulting in a 66 percent rise in CO2 emissions to 2.4 GT (IEA, Southeast Asia Energy Outlook 2019). Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam hold the biggest carbon footprint potential with 49 GW of new coal power infrastructure under development (as of July 2019).

The Shifting Financial Flows to Invest in Low-Carbon Development in Southeast Asia (SHIFT SEA) project recognized that Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam have the potential to lead change in the region. By pursuing a new development paradigm that leapfrogs the carbon intensity of the industrial revolution, governments and financial institutions can make it a political and investment priority to pivot towards clean, affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for the 21st century.

Between May 2018 and October 2019, the now completed SHIFT SEA project engaged with a variety of stakeholders through research, advocacy, high-level meetings, coalition forming and capacity building to support change in policymaking and investment frameworks in favor of the clean energy transition. An assessment of international financial institutions’ investment flows for financing clean energy complemented the projects’ efforts to support countries in fulfilling their commitments to the Paris Agreement and accelerate sustainable growth.

Activities and outcomes

  • Creating and/or strengthening multi-stakeholder coalitions such as JIRE, the Indonesia Low Emission Network; VCCA, the Vietnam Coalition for Climate Action and Aksyon Klima Pilipinas in the Philippines
  • Boosting solar rooftops and green solutions with grassroots programs, such as the Million Green Homes initiative in Vietnam and in the Philippines
  • Proposing a priority policy on energy efficiency to the Indonesian government
  • Supporting the greening of the public and private financial system through the publication of several assessment reports on the current status of financial flows
  • Shining the spotlight on low-carbon development opportunities in Southeast Asia through data and evidence, active media engagement and a presence at events, as well as high-level diplomacy outreach by Christiana Figueres and Rachel Kyte
  • Defining priority action areas for operating the shift in Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines

Selected media coverage

Climate battle will 'succeed or fail' in Asia, interview with Rachel Kyte, AFP, France24 and others

Energy efficiency makes financial sense, OPED by Helena Wright (E3G) and Glenn Pearce-Oroz (SEforALL), Asia Times

Former UN climate chief visits the Philippines to promote green investments, Manila Bulletin

Climate Mission, Jakarta Post

Concerted effort needed on climate action in 2018, OPED by Christiana Figueres (M2020), Singapore Business Times

About the project

SHIFT SEA was funded by the German International Climate Initiative (IKI) and led by a consortium of international energy and climate experts including Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL), Climate Action Network (CAN), Third Generation Environmentalism (E3G) and Mission 2020 (M2020). It was supported by the local expertise of three in-country organizations: Yayasan Mitra Hijau (YMH) in Indonesia, Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities (ICSC) in the Philippines and Green Innovation and Development Centre (GreenID) in Vietnam.

For more information contact Mikael Melin, SHIFT SEA project lead for SEforALL.

Follow SHIFT SEA on Twitter  #SHIFTSEA