Today, HSBC is setting out an ambitious plan to prioritise financing and investment that supports the transition to a net zero global economy – and helps to build a thriving, resilient future for society and businesses.

At the heart of the plan is a pledge to reduce financed emissions from our portfolio of customers to net zero by 2050 or sooner, in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.

To do this, we’re intensifying our support for customers to switch to more sustainable ways of doing business. We believe we have the scale and global reach to play a leading role in advising them on their journey towards net zero and a sustainable future. We aim to provide and facilitate $750bn to $1tn of sustainable finance and investments by 2030.

Group Chief Executive Noel Quinn said: “HSBC has long been committed to opening up opportunities for our customers and the communities we serve. As we enter a pivotal decade of change, we have a landmark opportunity to accelerate our efforts to build a healthier, more resilient, and more sustainable future.

“Our net zero ambition represents a material step up in our support for customers as we collectively work towards building a thriving low-carbon economy.”

Our net zero ambition represents a material step up in our support for customers

Noel Quinn, Group Chief Executive

HSBC is already a leading player in the transition to a low-carbon economy. In 2017, we committed to providing USD100 billion of sustainable finance by 2025. We have since launched a number of award-winning products, and been recognised as a leader in this area – including being named The World’s Best Bank for Sustainable Finance by Euromoney in 2019 and 2020.

However, achieving the Paris Agreement goals will require extra effort, at a faster pace. We plan to use our scale and global reach to seek to accelerate the transition to net zero.

We will act in three areas – becoming a net zero bank, supporting customers to thrive through transition, and unlocking next-generation climate solutions.

Our net zero ambition: a letter to customers

Noel Quinn has written an open letter to our customers explaining how we plan to support them on the journey to a net zero carbon future.

Becoming a net zero bank

We aim to:

  • Align our financed emissions – the carbon emissions of our portfolio of customers – to the Paris Agreement goal to achieve net zero by 2050 or sooner
  • Use the Paris Agreement Capital Transition Assessment Tool (PACTA) to develop clear, measurable pathways to net zero
  • Make regular, transparent disclosures to communicate our progress in line with the Taskforce on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures guidelines, and encourage our customers to do the same
  • Work with our peers, central banks and industry bodies to mobilise the financial system around a globally consistent, future-proofed standard to measure financed emissions, and a functioning carbon offset market
  • Achieve net zero in our own operations and supply chain by 2030 or sooner

Supporting our portfolio of customers to thrive through transition

We aim to:

  • Work with our portfolio of customers to support them on their journey to lower carbon emissions, bringing together our dedicated ESG Solutions team, our award-winning products, and experts across the bank to develop tailored solutions for our customers
  • Prioritise financing and investment that supports our customers in all sectors to transition to lower carbon emissions; our ambition is to provide between USD750 billion and USD1 trillion of financing and investment for this purpose and a sustainable future over the next 10 years.
  • Increase our portfolio of transition finance solutions to help enable even the most heavy-emitting sectors to progressively decarbonise, while helping to ensure a just and stable transition to maintain economic stability
  • Apply a climate lens to our financing decisions, taking into account the unique conditions for our clients across developed and developing economies

Unlocking next-generation climate solutions

We aim to:

  • Build one of the world’s largest natural capital managers – to mainstream natural capital as an asset class, and invest in activities that preserve, protect and enhance nature over the long-term; for this purpose, we have created a joint venture called HSBC Pollination Climate Asset Management
  • Set up a dedicated unit and tailored proposition to support CleanTech innovation companies, and target USD100 million of investment in CleanTech within our technology venture debt fund
  • Launch a philanthropic programme to donate USD100 million to scale climate innovation ventures, renewable energy, and nature-based solutions between now and 2025
  • Help transform sustainable infrastructure into a global asset class, and create a pipeline of bankable projects, leading the FAST-Infra initiative to drive investment in sustainable infrastructure together with the OECD and the World Bank Group

We will provide updates and more information on these plans in the coming months.

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