HSBC joins RE100 and commits $100bn to fight climate change

William Brittlebank
7 November 2017

LONDON: HSBC, one of the largest banking and financial services organizations in the world, has joined the RE100 initiative committing to 100% renewable power across its global operations by 2030.

The UK-based bank becomes the 114th member of RE100, which is run by The Climate Group in partnership with CDP, and brings together the world’s most influential businesses committed to using 100% renewable electricity.

HSBC will also provide US$100 billion in sustainable financing and investment by 2025 after announcing five new climate commitments on Monday.

The new commitments will also see the bank scale-up its support for renewable energy and low carbon technologies in support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Sam Kimmins, Head of RE100, The Climate Group, said: "I’m delighted to welcome HSBC to the RE100 campaign. HSBC are demonstrating climate leadership by committing to 100% renewable electricity in their own operations, as well as re-orienting their investment decisions.

“As well as being a good business investment, focusing entirely on long-term PPAs and measures that support the development of renewable electricity infrastructure means HSBC are actively bringing more renewable energy online. Their leadership sends an important demand signal to less open markets that business wants to invest in renewables. Together with other RE100 members, they are helping to accelerate market change and lower greenhouse gas emissions.”

The bank is aiming to source 100% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030, with an interim target of 90% by 2025, and by signing long-term agreements with suppliers, it will also support the development of new clean energy facilities.

As part of the new commitments, the bank will stop financing for new coal-fired power plants in developed markets and of thermal coal mines globally. It will also adopt the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) to improve transparency.

In a recent interview with The Climate Group, Andy Maguire, Group Chief Operating Officer, HSBC Holdings plc, said: “Joining RE100 is an opportunity to actively collaborate with various players in the market.  We plan on working closely with RE100, other corporates, governments and regulators to open up renewable energy markets and support the decentralization of power generation across our operational centers. This will enable HSBC and other corporates to develop PPAs globally and support the transition to a low carbon economy and 2-degree world.” 

The announcement complements HSBC’s long-term leadership role in sustainable finance. The bank has been a key player in developing voluntary standards for issuers of green bonds and social bonds, and issued its own 500 million euros green bond last year.

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