SEB is together with 42 other banks from across the world forming the Net-Zero Banking Alliance (NZBA) to accelerate the transition of the global economy to net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest.
The initiative, which brings together banks with combined assets of USD28.5 trillion, means that SEB commits to align operational and attributable emissions from its lending and investment portfolios with pathways to net-zero by 2050 or sooner.
The Net-Zero Banking Alliance is part of The Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ) – a global alliance that brings together existing and new net zero finance initiatives into one sector-wide strategic forum. Also launched today, GFANZ includes more than 160 firms together responsible for assets in excess of USD70 trillion. All member alliances within GFANZ, which apart from banks also include insurers, asset managers and asset owners, commit to using science-based guidelines to reach net zero emissions, cover all emission scopes, include 2030 interim target setting, and commit to transparent reporting and accounting.
“Climate change is one of the biggest challenges of our times and as a bank we have an important role to play in supporting the transition towards a low-carbon society,” says Johan Torgeby, SEB’s President and CEO. “We welcome the Net-Zero Banking Alliance initiative, and the opportunity to join forces with other committed signatories in order to reach the targets set out in the Paris Agreement.”
By joining the Net-Zero Banking Alliance, SEB is continuing to strengthen its commitments within the climate area. In 2019, SEB signed the UNEP FI (United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative) Principles for Responsible Banking, which means that SEB has committed to continuously adapt its business strategy to align and contribute to the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Earlier this year, SEB adopted an updated sector policy for fossil fuels that sharpens its guidelines to include more areas and clearer standpoints. The updated policy includes a roadmap for how SEB will phase out its exposure to coal and to unconventional oil, and puts restrictions on oil and gas extraction activities in sensitive areas such as the Arctic. SEB will also continue to gradually reduce its credit exposure to fossil fuels by applying a cap that is lowered annually.
In February, SEB’s fund company SEB Investment Management strengthened its sustainability policy, which includes implementing uniform exclusion criteria for all funds managed by SEB Investment Management and that all funds will exclude fossil fuels.