In the current climate crisis, concern for the environment is not only good will but also duty and an inherent part of running business. That is why we implement the provisions of our Environmental Declaration. We know that each aspect of our business has an environmental impact. We support green businesses and give up financing for those that harm the environment. We are also limiting our negative impact on the Earth.
Towards the end of 2017, we announced the Green Statement in which, among others, we committed ourselves to support areas, such as:
- Projects on renewable energy sources executed by electric power groups,
- projects supporting development of modern energy transmission and distribution infrastructure,
- ESCO projects to offer financing for energy efficiency solutions, where the repayment comes from a stream of financial savings, from a reduction in energy consumption,
- projects supporting electromobility,
- other projects aimed at preventing pollution and increasing recycling possibilities.
In our business activities, our priority is to implement environment-friendly projects. Therefore, we are gradually reducing our product and credit exposure to carbon intensive activities. Since 2015 we have not financed coal-fired power plants under green field projects, excluding our previous contractual obligations to these entities.
Additionally, the Management Board of ING Bank Śląski S.A. has resolved:
- by the end of 2025 at the latest, the bank will have completed its cooperation with entities that do not meet the environmental policy criterion, in particular with respect to coal combustion;
- beyond 2025, the bank will not finance customers whose operations are dependent on thermal coal more than 5%. At the same time, the Bank may support customers that implemented the plan to abandon coal firing in their energy transformation process;
- The Bank permits the establishment of relations with customers whose business is dependent on thermal coal not more than 10%, provided that they have a strategy to reduce this share to a level close to zero in 2025.
Lower energy consumption
We undertake pro-ecological actions aimed at, among others reducing energy consumption. As a result of purchasing certificates of origin - 100% of the electricity consumed in the bank comes from renewable sources. To minimize the environmental impact of operational activities, including offices, departments and computer centers, we strive to reduce energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions, reduce paper consumption and generate electronic waste. We also carry out information campaigns that reduce the consumption of natural resources and increase the employees' ecological awareness.
In 2019, we continued our activities in accordance with the Environmental Declaration and the Sustainable Development Strategy and priorities: Bank of green investments and Bank which is eco-aware. We have provided financing for projects enhancing energy efficiency and comprising investments into new sources of green wind energy and photovoltaics. We continued to support electromobility and offer eco-lending to retail clients.
Our attention is also attracted by the work progress on sustainable finance at the European Union level. In mid-2019 the European Commission published proposals for taxonomy of sustainable measures, standards for EU green bonds and the disclosure of climate indicators and ESG (environment, social responsibility and corporate governance) factors. At the yearend, EU member states and EU institutions reached a political compromise on the taxonomy, which defines 'green' investment projects in individual sectors of the economy.
We Reduce Our Environmental Impact
Our own activities have also environmental impact, e.g. through the consumption of resources by our personnel, through the use of IT systems and business travel. We are committed to reduce the environmental impact and to work closely with customers and suppliers to seize opportunities in the low-carbon and resource-efficient economy of the future. Our environmental approach describes how we manage our direct environmental impact. By adopting the 2020 targets for improving environmental performance, we committed ourselves to:
- reduce of greenhouse gases emissions by 84% by 2020 (2014 – base year). By 2019, we reduced emissions by 89%,
- reduce our water consumption by 20% by 2020 (2014 – base year). By 2019, we reduced consumption by 9%.