Smart Cities – Why All the Fuss?
Here’s what you missed last Thursday
In a riveting talk on sustainability and the future of global finance, our expert and director of the Sustainable Finance unit at HSBC Graham Smith took us through his team’s findings on how the cities we live in can continue to thrive, all-the-while reducing their damaging impact on the environment. An overall message came across loud and clear: HSBC will be at the forefront of investing in Smart City projects and will capitalize on a host of truly sustainable investment opportunities.
We were really encouraged by the breadth of HSBC’s overall strategy which focused on three main areas: the decarbonisation of transport, buildings and power generation. Transport largely took centre stage and was by far the most exciting field discussed. Besides concerns regarding fuel sourcing and clean air, Graham guided us through the up and coming private sector innovations in fields including electric vehicles and car-sharing initiatives that are already rolling out in some areas of Europe. The age of full automation and long-rage cars is almost upon us!
Of course, the story is by no means limited to those cities such as London and New York. One example that stood out of a truly subtle yet revolutionary project was allowing farmers in India to control their irrigation systems through their mobile phones! We might take plenty of our apps for granted, however this simple app was able to massively cut (unnecessary) water usage by these farmers and allow them much more time to tend to their crop and develop their businesses. We were thrilled by this story and more importantly reminded of the importance of a more global response to the threats of climate change.
Let’s face it, our cities are only due to grow along with the number of people in them and the opportunities to invest will continue to flourish. However, we agree with Graham that if banks, like HSBC, want to change public perception of financial institutions from ‘greedy’ to ‘green’, they need to mirror that in their investments and overall culture, with an ethos that upholds sustainability and responsibility. Not to mention, if we (as future employees) demand this, the firms will have little option but to listen!
If you’d like access to the slideshow used during this talk, email Lara (email@example.com) to request a copy.
MacroVenture PR & Marketing Officer