This 8th World Water Forum event will explore the challenges and opportunities in financing green infrastructure.

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Integrating natural infrastructure—such as watershed protection and restoration – with traditional water infrastructure, can reduce costs and improve water system performance, while providing additional environmental and social benefits. This represents an enticing investment opportunity, but one that is seldom realized today.

Drawing on examples of green-gray transactions, this session will explore four key questions:

  1. Why invest? highlights the business case for the water sector to invest in green-gray infrastructure.
  2. Who should invest? considers who among the public, private, and financial sectors should fund nature-based and hybrid solutions.
  3. How to invest? examines a range of finance models that demonstrate the attractiveness to investors and de-risk projects.
  4. How to encourage investment? discusses policy and institutional frameworks to create incentives and buy-in for green-gray infrastructure development.

Through these questions, we will explore the main challenges in financing green infrastructure, how the cost of maintaining green infrastructure could be recovered, how financial instruments can be designed to attract investments at a market rate, and how to assess and compare the impacts of different innovative economic and financial models based on uncertainty, externality, sustainability, welfare, and cost savings.


Opening remarks

  • Greg Browder, Global Lead: Water Security & Water Resources Management, World Bank Group

Part 1: Why invest in natural infrastructure?

  • Moderator: Suzanne Ozment, Natural Infrastructure Associate, WRI

  • Anik Bhaduri, Executive Director, Sustainable Water Future Programme

  • João José Assumpção de Abreu Demarchi, Coordinator of Technical Chamber for Natural Resources, PCJ Watershed Commitees

  • Dr. Munhyun Ryu, Water Economics Team Leader, K-water Institute Water Policy Research Center

Part 2: How to invest, and encourage investment, in natural infrastructure

  • Moderator: James Dalton, Coordinator of Global Water Initiatives, IUCN

  • German Sturzenegger, Senior Specialist, Water and Sanitation Division, Inter-American Development Bank

  • Kathleen Dominique, Environmental Economist, OECD

  • Eric Soubeiran, Global Nature and Climate Director, Danone

Closing remarks

  • Elena Lopez Gunn, Founder, ICATALIST