UN Climate Change News, Bonn, Nov 7 – HSBC bank has pledged to mobilize USD 100 billion in sustainable financing and investment to support the transition to a low carbon economy and to spur green growth worldwide.
The announcement coincided with the opening day of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bonn (COP23, 6-17 November), where governments at all levels, together with business, investors and civil society, are working to increase climate action.
Investments in low carbon technologies are key to achieving the goal set in Paris for limiting the rise in temperature well below 2 degrees Celsius and as close as possible to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
HSBC has already signed agreements with clean energy producers to source 24% of its electricity from renewable sources.
HSBC has promised to accelerate its support for clean energy and lower carbon technologies by discontinuing the financing of new coal-fired power plants in developing markets and of thermal coal mines globally.
The bank supports projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and support the UN’s 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.
Group Chief Executive Stuart Gulliver said: “For more than a decade, HSBC has helped clients break new ground in the green bond markets in Europe and Asia, and to finance some of the biggest climate-friendly infrastructure projects in the world. The USD 100 billion commitment that we are announcing today acknowledges the scale of the challenge in making a transition to a low-carbon future.”
In addition, the bank has made the following pledges:
- Source 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030, with an interim target of 90% by 2025
- Reduce its exposure to thermal coal and actively manage the transition path for other high carbon sectors
- Adopt the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures to improve transparency by providing details on its approach to climate risks and opportunities
- Lead and shape the debate about sustainable finance and investment by promoting the development of industry-wide definitions
HSBC said the new commitments are part of its ongoing focus on meeting social, environmental and governance responsibilities and ensuring green and sustainable finance. For instance, over the last few years the bank has worked on developing voluntary standards for issuers of green bonds and social bonds and has also issued its own 500-million-euro green bond.
The HSBC Press Release is available here.
Photo credit: Håkan Dahlström