Given the accessibility of sessions online due to the pandemic, New York Climate Week will likely be the largest climate change gathering of 2020.

September 18, 2020

The ISS ESG Guide to Climate Week NYC 2020

The climate experts at ISS ESG have carefully reviewed hundreds of New York Climate Week 2020 events to identify trending topics and ultimately curate a list of our recommended top 20 events to help investors sort through the week’s copious program.


This year’s New York Climate Week will run from 21 – 25 September. With over 130 events geared towards financial market participants alone, ISS ESG hosted a virtual roundtable on 16 September to parse and review the many sessions for attending investors. Given the accessibility of sessions online due to the pandemic, New York Climate Week will likely be the largest climate change gathering of 2020.

Let’s not forget: New York Climate Week is not geared towards the financial industry. It is at its core an event convening companies and regulators to foster the decarbonization of the global economy.

At the same time, it’s become an event for a wide range of interested participants, from civil society to business, to discuss a wide range of topics. And it’s become a platform to launch commitments, products, initiatives, and pledges. New York Climate Week 2019, for example, saw the pledge of Danish pension funds to invest almost US$50 billion into the energy transition until 2030 or the launch of the Principles or Responsible Banking with 132 initial bank signatories.

New York Climate Week 2020 will likely see a range of similar ground-breaking announcements from corporates, investors, and solution providers.

How to Navigate Climate Week

The website allows for an easy search of all events and this search function is also available via the convenient New York Climate Week App in your respective App store. Looking for everything related to Net Zero targets? Just type in “Net Zero” and a range of events with this particular focus will display.

New York Climate Week is broadly clustered under 10 broad themes:

1.) Clean Energy Transition (152 events)

Topics include renewable energy, just transition, clean energy policies, decarbonization, green economic agendas, and zero-emission pledges​

2.) Transport and Infrastructure (92 events)

Topics include electric vehicles (EVs), public transport, EV policy, air pollution/quality​

3.) Industry and Built Environment (107 events)

Topics include heavy industry such as steel and cement, buildings, shipping​

4.) Finance, Investment and Jobs (134 events)

Topics include climate finance, investment, employment opportunities, green economic recovery​

5.) Food and Land Use (88 events)

Topics include agriculture, agroforestry and forests, food’s journey, food waste, regenerative farming, carbon sequestration, climate-friendly diets, land restoration, conservation​

6.) Nature and Science (97 events)

Topics include ecosystems, ecological conservation, oceans, weather patterns​

7.) US and International Policy (92 events)

Topics include national, subnational and local policy, U.S. elections​

8.) Youth, Public Mobilization and Justice (117 events)

Topics include youth, activism, social justice, environmental justice, marches and demonstrations​

9.) Sustainable Travel and Tourism (37 events)

Topics include ecotourism, sustainable and low-waste living, travel and tourism​

10.) Climate Impacts and Adaptation (182 events)

Topics include impacts on livelihoods, coastal and vulnerable zone preparation, zero-waste/circular economy, building new infrastructure (flood defenses)​

(Event numbers as of 16. September 2020 – new events added on a daily basis)

While finance plays a role in many of these events, it is the 134 events tagged under theme 4 “Finance, Investments and Jobs” that is most relevant for the financial community.

Trending Investor Topics

Within the events geared towards investors, ISS ESG found the following 10 key topics that we distilled further into four groups: A.) Emerging Topics B.) Drivers of Action C.) Credit & Debt D.) Trends in Analysis.


1) Climate and Covid-19​

2) Climate Resilience ​

3) Climate Lobbying (including engagement and voting) ​


4) The role of Regulation ​

5) Targets: Science Based Targets; Net Zero initiatives, Scenario analysis ​

6) Fossil fuels (incl Divestment) ​


7) The role of Green Bonds​

8) The role of Banks (principles of responsible banking, sustainable loans, etc.) ​


9) Climate Analysis across asset classes (PE; Real Estate, Credit, etc.) ​

10) New models & automatic tools for investors and corporates 

A quick polling at the ISS ESG virtual roundtable reveals that financial industry representatives on the webinar were most interested in the topics Climate Lobbying (including engagement and voting), Climate Analysis across asset classes (with a specific emphasis on credit portfolios) and climate targets in general and net zero targets in particular.

Below, you can find a list of events curated by the ISS ESG climate team and mapped to the identified trending topics. By right-clicking on the hyperlinks, you can find out more or register directly.

Event Recommendations by the ISS ESG Climate Team

Monday, 21 September

Event DescriptionCategoryTimeURL
Climate Inequity: The Role of Investors In Building Shared Resilience​Climate Resilience // Climate and Covid2:00 pm – 3:00 pm EST
20:00 – 21:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link
Nourishing Resilience: ESG As A Tool for Sustainable Food And AG GrowthClimate Resilience11:00 am – 12:00 pm EST
17:00 – 18:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link
Innovations In Sustainable Finance In The Covid EraClimate and Covid11:00 am EST
17:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link
Cop26 & The Zero Carbon Growth AgendaTargets: Science Based Targets; Net Zero initiatives, Scenario analysis// Role of Regulation12:00 pm – 1:00 pm EST
18:00 – 19:00 CET
Overview Link
Watch Link

Tuesday, 22 September

Event DescriptionCategoryTimeURL
Mitigating Climate Transition Risk In Equity PortfoliosClimate Analysis across asset classes // New models &automatic Tools11:00 am – 12:00 pm EST
17:30 – 18:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Email Link
Walking the Talk?
Is there a linkage between oil &gas companies announced CO2 ambitions and their upstream project portfolio management?
Climate and Covid// Targets: Science Based Targets; Net Zero initiatives//Climate Analysis across asset classes // Fossil Fuels9:00 am – 10:00 am EST
15:00 – 16:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link
Climate Intelligence For The Oil And Gas IndustriesClimate Analysis across asset classes // Tools for investors and corporates // Targets// Fossil Fuels5:00 pm – 6:00 pm EST
23:00 – 00:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link

Wednesday, 23 September

Event DescriptionCategoryTimeURL
Private Sector Adaptation Finance and Nature Based SolutionsClimate Resilience //Climate Analysis across asset classes // New models & automatic Tools9:00 am – 10:10 pm EST
15:00 – 16:10 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link
The Current State And Future Of TCFD Implementation – What’s Next?Targets: Science Based Targets10:00 am – 11:00 am EST
19:00 – 20:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link

Thursday, 24 September

Event DescriptionCategoryTimeURL
Private Wealth Financing Sustainability WebinarClimate Analysis across asset classes10:00 am – 12:00 pm EST
16:00 – 18:00 CET
**Two Sessions**
Overview Link
Registration Link
You Missed This! : The Best New Ideas In Sustainable FinanceTBD4:00 pm – 7:00 pm EST
22:00 – 1:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link
Climate Change Within the ESG ArenaClimate Resilience //Climate Analysis across asset classes11:30 am – 1:00 pm EST
17:30 – 19:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link

Friday, 25 September

Event DescriptionCategoryTimeURL
Climate Investment Coalition’s RoadmapClimate Analysis across asset classes // Targets: Net Zero initiatives, Scenario analysis9:00 am – 10:15 am EST
15:00 – 16:15 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link
Aligning Corporate Lobbying With ClimateClimate Lobbying // Targets: Science Based Targets; NetZero initiatives, Scenario analysis1:00 pm – 2:00 pm EST
19:00 – 20:00 CET
Overview Link
Registration Link

We hope this helps you structure your week of 21 September. Enjoy the New York Climate Week!


Maximilian Horster, Head of Climate Solutions, ISS ESG

Viola Lutz, Head of Investor Consulting, Climate Solutions, ISS ESG

Fikapo Gondwe, ESG Consultant, ISS ESG

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