It all starts with climate protection

What do banks have to do with climate protection? The short answer is: plenty. Banks can use credits to steer financial flows towards sustainability.

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Beate Schlosser

Commerzbank

A worker installs a solar panel on a roof.
The green transformation is gradually taking shape.
According to a study by German promotional bank KfW, additional investments worth EUR 40 billion are required annually by 2050 for the green transformation in Germany alone. Manufacturing companies in particular must avoid climate damaging CO2 emissions in order to meet the 1.5-degree target.

Sustainability embedded in our Strategy

“We see it as our responsibility to actively support change,” summarises Bettina Storck, Divisional Head of Group Sustainability Management at Commerzbank. “Sustainability is an integral part of our Strategy.” Commerzbank’s understanding of sustainability is set out transparently for all its stakeholders in its ESG framework. This includes a description of the criteria for sustainable lending.

Climate protection is also a key issue for our own business

“We want to set a good example,” says Bettina Storck . In Germany, the Bank has been climate-neutral since 2015, and its offices have been supplied exclusively with renewable power since 2013.

Overall, renewable energies are playing a key role in transforming the economy. Hydrogen is also becoming increasingly relevant in the fight against climate change, providing it is produced using wind, solar or hydroelectric power and is thus CO2-free. Here countries with many hours of sunshine have a head start in production. This is why Commerzbank is continuing to expand its international network, for example in the Middle East and North Africa, to ensure a local presence for its customers.

Climate protection is just the beginning

The next key issue on Commerzbank's sustainability agenda is biodiversity protection. “This is about more than just flowers and bees. Without functioning ecosystems, the very existence of our planet is at stake,” explains Storck. “This is the next big task that we are now tackling.”

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