Today, we have released our 2019 Sustainability Report, sharing insights into how we work with social and environmental issues internally as well as towards customers through our sustainable offering. This past year we have taken additional steps towards becoming a more sustainable and responsible bank.
As one of the largest banks in the Nordic region, Nordea plays an active part in the banking industry’s role and responsibility in shaping a sustainable future. We want Nordea to be a positive contributor to society in the future, enabling customers to make sustainable choices through our offering. Sustainability is at the core of everything we do at Nordea and in 2019, we continued to integrate sustainability into all of Nordea’s core operations, policies and processes.
”I’m proud that we can disclose many results within the sustainability area in this year’s report. It is the outcome of our entire organisation’s contribution and shows the progress we make and the challenges we face within the sustainability area” says Jenny Fransson, Sustainability Reporting Expert at Nordea.
Here are a few highlights from the past year:
As the only Nordic bank, Nordea was one of 30 founding banks of the Principles for Responsible Banking (PRB); a United Nations-backed initiative signed by 130 banks, collectively managing more than $47 trillion in assets or a third of the global industry. The responsible banking principles were signed on September 22 at the UN Headquarters in New York.
The following day, Nordea and 30 other signatories took yet another important leap forward by announcing a Collective Commitment to Climate Action - a ground-breaking pledge to set out concrete and time-bound actions to scale up our contribution to, and align our business with, the Paris Agreement.
During the year, we launched 11 new sustainable funds and were delighted to see an increase of almost 87% in Assets under Management (AuM) in our Sustainable Selection. We also expanded our green financing offerings of sustainable bonds, green mortgages, green car financing and launched green corporate loans on all our Nordic markets.
Under the umbrella #thinkgreen, we bring together sustainability initiatives at our Nordic head offices. In 2019, we started offering meat-free alternatives in our canteens and reduced our use of plastic disposables. Meat and plastics are emission-intense products and by reducing these we aim to inspire and create awareness among our employees on how to make an easy and positive contribution to the climate.
Already in 2015 we started The Paperless Banking Programme, intending to replace physical communication with digital solutions to electronically sign and archive documents. Fewer trees are needed for producing paper and envelopes and transportation of letters by road and air is significantly reduced. Four years later, the transition from paper to digital has saved 4,028 trees, reduced carbon emissions by 1,000, tonnes and saved 168 million litres of water.
We are proud to say that we walk the talk when it comes to sustainability and that we were top-ranked among financials in Misum’s report Walking the Talk? 2019. Misum is a multi-disciplinary research environment at Stockholm School of Economics.
Amid climate change and environmental issues, sustainability has never been more topical. Nor has a transition been more urgent than now. We will therefore intensify our efforts in 2020, both in terms of performing climate-related scenario analyses of our financing and investment portfolios, and strengthening our internal risk management governance and processes. To us, being sustainable is the natural way of working, and we want our actions to benefit both our customers and our communities.
”This report is both a strong showcase of collaboration across the Group and that we have full speed ahead,” says Anders Langworth, Head of Group Sustainable Finance.
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