Patrick Bigger

  • Lecturer of Economic Geography - Lancaster University

Research interests

My research focuses on the promises and pitfalls of enrolling return seeking capital to pay for action on environmental crises. My doctoral research focused on the creation and operation of California's regulatory carbon market, and since then I have conducted fieldwork in Europe, North America, and east Africa on climate finance instruments ranging from green bonds to REDD+ carbon offsetting, to multilateral development bank investment initiatives. I have written about both mitigation and adaptation finance, as well as return-seeking investment in biodiversity conservation. My current research looks at finance for urban green infrastructure and resilience programs. My work has demonstrated the challenges of rendering climate or biodiversity investable, and the limitations of profit-seeking finance to deliver environmental benefits at the pace and scale needed to reproduce a vibrant, safe world.

Additionally, I have an ongoing research project that theorizes and quantifies US military greenhouse gas emissions. This work, which has been widely covered in the media, was among the first robust quantifications of military contributions of climate change, and the first to situate these emissions in a critical social science framework.