e-Learning Course on Climate Change: Risks and Opportunities for the Finance Sector
United Nations Environment Program Finance Initiative has developed a comprehensive, innovative and effective global e-learning program to support staff in financial institutions in enhancing knowledge on climate change and carbon finance. The course provides an introduction to climate change and the science behind it, as well as emphasizing how it will affect the financial services sector. Participants are exposed to the policy and regulations in place, specifically the Kyoto Protocol, the Bali Road-map and other regional policies. The course educates participants on the effect of climate change on energy financing and energy alternatives. Another important aspect of the course was the module on carbon finance.
The courses and guidance are to some degree 'self-taught' since there is no direct face-to-face interaction with a professor, as in a traditional class setting. However throughout the duration of the course, a mentor is on hand to answer questions from the participants and lead discussions put forward in the course. For the past two courses, there were three mentors over the three weeks. The mentors were also part of the five authors of the course text.
The course had a huge response with over 200 participants from around the globe, mainly made up of the Finance Initiative membership. The second updated course was run in June 2008 with 100 participants.