UK banks continue to invest in fossil fuels

Major UK banks are presenting a ‘confusing and conflicting’ account of their sustainability initiatives to customers according to insight agency Kingfisher.

Kingfisher assessed over 800 web pages in its report, commissioned by Triodos Bank, finding that the high street UK banks share very little information on sustainability ambitions on their customer-facing websites and only present generalised statements, claims and commitments.

Whilst communicating messages on sustainability, nearly £150bn has been invested into financing fossil fuels since the Paris Agreement was adopted in 2016, including £45bn for the expansion of fossil fuels of which £13bn was invested in fracking, with these figures coming BankTrack.

Green terms might be used in the messaging, but the UN Sustainable Development Goals are not mentioned once by any major bank, while the term ‘sustainability’ occurs only four times.

Actress and campaigner Lily Cole commented: “I’ve long believed in voting with your wallet for the change you want to see in the world, yet there are other subtle and powerful ways that our money shapes the world – such as the investments made by our banks, pensions and the institutions we work with.”

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