14 Jan 2008 05:01:31
Banks 'doing more' to combat climate change
Many of the world's leading banks are doing more to reduce their carbon footprint, but the sector as a whole still needs to overhaul its lending practices, according to a new report.
The survey, undertaken by US environmental body Ceres, discovered that the highest achieving firms in the sector, in terms of lessening their environmental impact, had focussed on reducing their carbon emissions and increasing support for renewable energy projects, CNN reported.
However, while Ceres president Mindy Lubber claimed the survey indicated a change in bank's attitude towards combating climate change, she argued that more needed to be done.
"We're seeing a different mindset across the board," she told the website. "They've gotten more involved because the debate has changed. This is a capital market issue and a government issue."
In an interview with computing.co.uk she added: "They must do more to move the economy away from fossil fuels and high-carbon investments that are exacerbating climate change."
The table of environmentally-aware global banks was topped by HSBC, with Citigroup also performing well, while Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers received less-positive assessments.