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FRANKFURT / GENF (dpa-AFX) – Banks around the globe are committed to more climate protection. In the “Net-Zero Banking Alliance”, the financial institutions strive to reduce their emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide as much as possible. The aim of the alliance, initiated by the financial initiative of the UN Environment Program, is to reduce CO2 emissions from business operations as well as loan and investment portfolios to net zero by 2050 at the latest.
At the start on Wednesday, 43 banks from 23 countries are supporting the initiative, including: Bank of America, BNP Paribas, Credit Suisse, HSBC, Morgan Stanley, Santander, Société Générale (Société Générale (Societe Generale)) and UBS. The two large private banks Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank as well as Germany’s largest alternative bank GLS are there from Germany.
“Banks will play a crucial role in the fight against climate change, and the establishment of the Net-Zero Banking Alliance is an important step towards rapid and coordinated action,” said Deutsche Bank CEO Christian Sewing. The CEO of Commerzbank, Manfred Knof, stated: “With the voluntary Net Zero commitment, we are underlining our determination to actively shape the sustainable transformation of the economy and society.”
Climate protection is becoming increasingly important in the financial sector. At the end of June, for example, various banks in Germany committed themselves in an initiative driven by Triodos Bank and the environmental organization WWF to align their loan and investment portfolios with the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement. The core of the Paris Agreement of 2015 is to limit global warming to well below two degrees compared to the pre-industrial level. At the beginning of December, the German savings banks declared that they wanted to contribute to reducing CO2 emissions and generally more environmentally friendly management. Environmental and climate protectors regularly doubt that such voluntary commitments are sufficient./ben/DP/jha