Events, GFCR, SCF, Thought Leadership

A Deeper Look At Events and Highlights During COP28 2023

Pegasus leadership was honored to join climate, civic, global, technology and finance leaders from around the world at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP28). Please find below a deeper dive into key events and highlights.


New financial instruments to foster climate action in the Global South 

Given the number of global climate-related challenges we face such as water stress, biodiversity loss, and methane emissions, we need to recognize that essentially every investor should be a climate investor today, particularly in developing countries who are most vulnerable to climate change’s impacts.  At COP28, new investment products and financing pledges surfaced that complement the work we do. However, more capital is needed. 

In response to this need, we’re thrilled to unveil the Emerging Markets Catalytic Investor Forum in collaboration with MUFG, AFC, and Sail Ventures. This initiative aims to attract a broader spectrum of investors – including philanthropies and institutional investors – fostering collective efforts towards a sustainable future in emerging markets and developing countries. 

Green Climate Fund, Catalytic Finance Foundation, Pegasus Capital Advisors, MUFG, IADB, SAIL Ventures and Mirova at the Emerging Markets Catalytic Investor Forum launch

Gina McCarthy, Senior Operating Advisor at Pegasus Capital Advisors, at the Emerging Markets Catalytic Investor Forum launch

Food security, nature, and health on COP28’s top agenda

Declarations on sustainable agriculture, resilient food systems, health, and climate action were also highlighted as key issues closely related to climate change. Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri, UAE’s Minister of Climate Change and Environment (MoCCAE), put food security on the top of the agenda. MoCCAE announced the ‘Financing the Future of Food (F3)’ initiative to explore innovative bond structures that will help de-risk private sector capital and transform food and agricultural systems in the Global South. Our CEO and Founder Craig Cogut and Senior Operating Advisor Gina McCarthy met with Her Excellency Mariam Almheiri to discuss these priorities as Pegasus became involved in F3. 

Given food security is one of our key investment priorities, together with the Forum for Farmers and Food Security, we gathered policymakers, corporates, producers, and investors to discuss what’s needed to accelerate food security sustainably during a series of intimate dinner dialogues. We were delighted to see our experts – Paola de Almeida, Operating Partner who is responsible for Food and Agriculture at Pegasus Capital Advisors, small-holder farmer empowerment entrepreneurs, Olowo-n’djo Tchala, founder of Alaffia / founder & CEO of Ayeya, and Vijay Thallam, Executive Vice Chairman of the Indian non-profit Rythu Sadhikara Samstha – share their personal and inspirational stories of how they improve the livelihoods of thousands of women farmers through organic agriculture.  

In addition, we are excited to be part of the Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate (AIM for Climate / AIM4C) and work with the Food Systems for the Future (FSF) Institute on circularity in the food system by upcycling organic waste and reduce the cost of animal feed for producers through a sustainable, protein-rich alternative such as black soldier flies.

L to R: Craig Cogut, CEO & Founder of Pegasus Capital Advisors and Ambassador Ertharin Cousin, CEO & Founder of the FSF Institute

Subnational climate action to increase resilience 

The COP28 Presidency and Bloomberg hosted the Local Climate Action Summit that focused on subnational governments taking the lead on climate action. During the Summit, we were proud to announce our memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the United Cities and Local Governments of Africa (UCLG Africa), which is the umbrella organization for African local governments to roll out projects for improved water, waste, energy, and digital infrastructure across African cities, including improved broadband access with Curvalux solutions. 

Furthermore, we saw increased interest from the private sector to commit to climate resilience action. The Biden administration announced a series of climate initiatives, including additional commitments to the PREPARE Call to Action, which has mobilized $2 billion in new investments to build climate resilience worldwide. Pegasus Capital Advisors is a founding company of the initiative, alongside Google, Meta, and Microsoft, and was included in a White House Fact Sheet on the announcement. We are thrilled to see that insurance companies such as Howden and AON are among the new partners, given their critical role in helping to promote more sustainable approaches to improve climate resilience. 

Gina McCarthy and Craig Cogut further engaged in a dialogue with  Japanese investors on collaborative efforts between government and businesses, functioning as equal partners to advance Japan’s climate ambitions. In addition, Gina McCarthy and Craig Cogut gave an interview at FinTech TV during COP28 to highlight the importance of mobilizing capital for the Global South.

Addressing the most vulnerable through public-private partnerships

During our meetings with high level government representatives from the Bahamas, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and Rwanda, among others, it became clear that we need to leverage public-private partnerships to ensure that investment activities align with nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), and National Adaptation Plans (NAPs), that outline the countries’ mitigation and adaptation needs and the priorities to enable local action. 

Our Call to Action towards Island Resilience asked public and private actors to drive action in vulnerable island nations. We are excited to work with the government of Barbados and the Green Climate Fund to roll out the first Blue Green Bank in Barbados as an example of concrete action. 

L to R: David Albertani, CEO of Catalytic Finance Foundation, Karima Degia, Deputy Director, Bridgetown Initiative Unit  in the Prime Minister’s Office of Barbados, Craig Cogut, CEO & Founder of Pegasus Capital Advisors,  Markus Müller, Global Head of the Chief Investment Office of the Private Bank, Deutsche Bank, Dr Ana Gonzalez Pelaez, Fellow, Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) 

L to R: Craig Cogut, CEO & Founder of Pegasus Capital Advisors and Senator the Hon. Matthew Samuda, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation of Jamaica

As part of our public-private partnership efforts, we are proud to announce plans to build on our existing role as the investment fund manager for the Global Fund for Coral Reefs partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), which will seek to effectively layer and sequence different sources and types of financing in support of the SDGs and Paris Climate Agreement. Pegasus will further leverage its existing partnerships with the Green Climate Fund, and global and regional financial institutions and corporations to support the transformation of sustainable value chains, such as combating plastics pollution and waste management. Further details will be announced in the New Year.

‘Scaling Up Climate and Nature Investments’ Panel with UNDP, Pegasus Capital Advisors, AIIB, Danone, and CMMI Indonesia 

Data will be key to measure the impact of these collaborative efforts. We launched the Digital Transformation and Sustainability Solutions Lab to leverage technology and data analysis to address local challenges and co-create digital and sustainability policy. We met with Dr. Thomas Puschmann, founder and executive director of the Global Center for Sustainable Digital Finance at Stanford University and the University of Zurich, to discuss the new initiative that will engage renowned academic experts from Stanford and U.C. Berkeley communities, with impact entrepreneurs working on the ground, grassroots communities, NGOs, and local and regional governments to advance and measure impact.

Spotlight on oceans and protection of coral reefs, mangroves, and coastal communities 

Although oceans are behind in funding, it is exciting to see multiple interventions that aim to improve coastal ecosystems and habitats such as mangroves, coral reefs, and seagrass, and address various issues from pollution to overfishing. Pegasus Capital Advisors and Global Fund for Coral Reefs Coalition announced a significant acceleration in ocean resilience efforts with The Coral Reef Breakthrough Initiative. The coalition mobilized over $200 million in initial investments toward the 2030 Coral Reef Breakthrough target of $12 billion to secure the future of at least 125,000 km2 of shallow-water tropical coral reefs, with Pegasus Capital Advisors among contributors such as Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Green Climate Fund. 

We were excited to host an event with Prince Albert II of Monaco and the foundation to showcase examples, such as Parley for the Oceans – who is working to end the global plastic crisis with a systemic and scalable approach enabling coastal communities, governments and brands to benefit from transforming plastic waste into premium substances – as well as Carbonwave, which turns Sargassum into high-value products to help displace fossil fuel and animal-based products in cosmetic emulsifiers, agriculture, textiles, and plastics industries, and Oceanpick, which works to source ocean-grown fish from sustainable methods.

Irfan Thassim, Founder of Oceanpick

We also celebrated our partnership with OceanX, an ocean exploration initiative founded by Mark Dalio and Ray Dalio, that combines science, technology, and media to explore and raise awareness for the oceans and create a community engaged with protecting them.

OceanX visit with Ray and Mark Dalio