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The Climate Group partners with HSBC on US$100 million programme to combat climate change world-wide

30 May 2007

The °Climate Group has been selected as one of four lead partners in the HSBC Climate Partnership, a groundbreaking five-year, US$100 million initiative to respond to the urgent threat of climate change world-wide. Along with Earthwatch Institute, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) and WWF, The Climate Group is working with HSBC to inspire action on climate change by individuals, businesses and governments world-wide.

Given that over 50% of the world's population currently lives in cities, a figure expected to rise to 60% by 2030, and that urban areas account for 75% of global energy use, they have a significant role to play in combating climate change. Cities are also concentrated areas where business, government and the media can come together to discover, evaluate and implement climate change solutions. This is why, working with some of the world's great cities - Hong Kong, London, Mumbai, New York and Shanghai, The °Climate Group's role in the new partnership will be to facilitate these cities in accelerating their climate change mitigation ambitions, and moreover, to promote their actions as models for the low carbon world.

Steve Howard, CEO of The Climate Group said: "Climate change is an increasingly urban issue. High summer temperatures, storms and rising sea levels will have more extreme impacts on city life. We have a short period of time left to take action. Many of the solutions lie in cities - concentrations of capital, decision makers, opinion formers and population. Through the HSBC Climate Partnership we will accelerate our programme in five world cities, engaging the most influential businesses and city governments to lead a 'coalition of the willing' against global warming."

In addition to The °Climate Group's ambitious programme, the HSBC Climate Partnership will:
> Create 'climate champions' worldwide who will undertake field research and bring back valuable knowledge and experience to their communities, in collaboration with Earthwatch Institute;
> Conduct the largest ever field experiment on the world's forests to measure carbon and the effects of climate change, in collaboration with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute; and
> Help to protect four of the world's major rivers - the Amazon, Ganges, Thames, and Yangtze - from the impact of climate change, benefiting the 450 million people who rely on them. This scheme is being led by WWF.

With HSBC making the largest ever single donation and the largest for a UK company, The °Climate Group is able to transform its operation and extend its outreach and influence, with the planned establishment of offices in China and India, both fast growing economies with increasingly large carbon footprints. The programme will also further support the expansion of the organisation's existing offices in the UK, Europe, the US and Australia.

HSBC Group Chairman, Stephen Green said: "The HSBC Climate Partnership will achieve something profoundly important. By working with four of the world's most respected environmental organisations and creating a 'green taskforce' of thousands of HSBC employees world-wide, we believe we can tackle the causes and impacts of climate change. Over the next five years HSBC will make responding to climate change core to our business operations and intrinsic to the way we work with our clients across the world."

HSBC has a long-standing commitment to the environment and believes climate change is the single largest environmental challenge this century. The Climate Partnership is the bank's latest and most significant collaboration with The °Climate Group to date. As well as being one of the founding members of the organisation, HSBC has supported The °Climate Group on previous projects, including international book and exhibition NorthSouthEastWest, and in January 2007, the bank offered its customers a Green Sale, a portion of the revenue generated by the scheme was gifted to The °Climate Group. In addition, The °Climate Group facilitated HSBC's success in becoming the first carbon neutral bank ahead of schedule in 2005 and °Climate Group CEO Steve Howard is a member of HSBC's Carbon Management Taskforce.

HSBC's Climate Partnership builds upon 'Investing in Nature', the Group's previous US$50 million, five-year eco-partnership which concluded in 2006.


For further information please contact:
UK: Alison Lucas: +44 (0)7786 546724, Bjorn Roberts: +44 (0)7791 121555
USA: Callum Grieve: +1 212 545 5428
Australia: Rupert Posner: +61 438 989 420

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