Lobbyists are often mistrusted. Special interest groups use them to influence politicians.
However, what’s the alternative? Policy makers cannot know everything. They need input from industry and non-profit groups. Through personal contacts with officials and by publishing articles, lobbyists can get new ideas on the agenda.
Take the responsibility of central banks in the green transition to phase out carbon-based fuels.
European Central Bank (ECB) board member Benoit Cœuré recently declared that the ECB should actively support the transition to a low carbon economy. The European Parliament’s Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) wants a green ECB.
Until recently, central bankers didn’t think they had anything to do with climate change. That has changed, thanks to people like Frank van Lerven and Ludovic Suttor-Sorel (Climate change is everyone’s business – the ECB is no exception), Alexander Barkawi (Why monetary policy should go green), Pierre Monnin (Central banks should reflect climate risks in monetary policy operations) and Josh Ryan-Collins (Sustainable finance debate should not ignore monetary policy).
Silvia Merler from think tank Bruegel has reviewed the latest developments on green central banking here.
Although I’ve been critical about the (lack of) financial debate in Europe before, it seems that the ECB is way ahead of the Federal Reserve when it comes to green central banking (maybe I’m wrong, comments are always welcome).
In related news, Positive Money Europe is hiring an Advocacy Officer. Check it out!