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The Science of Climate Change

Climate change is no longer a distant threat or just a possibility, it is now a reality for all of us. In this pathway, Kevin Trenberth, a renowned climatologist, delves into the science behind climate change. He first introduces the climate system, its main components and forces.

Tackling the Plastic Crisis

Plastic pollution is by far the biggest threat to our oceans and this remains an incredibly tough problem to solve. Plastic credits could potentially serve as one of the much needed solutions for this crisis.

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The Scale of the Net Zero Challenge

The price of meeting net zero is estimated to be between $100-150 trillion over the next 30 years. Regardless of this cost, we need to reach net zero before climate change does irreversible damage to the environment and the economy.

ESG, Sustainability and Impact Jargon Buster

ESG, sustainability, impact… they all just mean green, right? Not quite. Despite being used often interchangeably, there are distinct differences between these terms.

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Featured Pathways

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The Science of Climate Change

Climate change is no longer a distant threat or just a possibility, it is now a reality for all of us. In this pathway, Kevin Trenberth, a renowned climatologist, delves into the science behind climate change. He first introduces the climate system, its main components and forces.

Tackling the Plastic Crisis

Plastic pollution is by far the biggest threat to our oceans and this remains an incredibly tough problem to solve. Plastic credits could potentially serve as one of the much needed solutions for this crisis.

More pathways

Book a demo

Pricing

Ready to get started?

Plans & Membership

Our Platform

Expert led content

+1,000 expert presented, on-demand video modules

Learning analytics

Keep track of learning progress with our comprehensive data

Interactive learning

Engage with our video hotspots and knowledge check-ins

Testing & certification

Gain CPD / CPE credits and professional certification

Managed learning

Build, scale and manage your organisation’s learning

Integrations

Connect Sustainability Unlocked to your current platform

Featured Content

More featured content

The Scale of the Net Zero Challenge

The price of meeting net zero is estimated to be between $100-150 trillion over the next 30 years. Regardless of this cost, we need to reach net zero before climate change does irreversible damage to the environment and the economy.

ESG, Sustainability and Impact Jargon Buster

ESG, sustainability, impact… they all just mean green, right? Not quite. Despite being used often interchangeably, there are distinct differences between these terms.

More featured content

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Pricing

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Book a demo

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Retail Banking and Green Economy

Retail Banking and Green Economy

Simon Thompson

Chartered Banker Institute CEO & ESG specialist

In this video, Simon delves into the pivotal role of retail banks in driving the transition to a sustainable, low-carbon economy. He explains how these financial institutions are actively promoting eco-friendly choices through their innovative "green" banking initiatives. He further explores the range of products and services, such as green mortgages, loans, savings, and investments, that retail banks offer to incentivise a more sustainable world.

In this video, Simon delves into the pivotal role of retail banks in driving the transition to a sustainable, low-carbon economy. He explains how these financial institutions are actively promoting eco-friendly choices through their innovative "green" banking initiatives. He further explores the range of products and services, such as green mortgages, loans, savings, and investments, that retail banks offer to incentivise a more sustainable world.

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Retail Banking and Green Economy

11 mins 59 secs

Overview

Banks, critical to our economy, can drive the transition to a sustainable, low-carbon world. Recently, "green" banking has grown, powered by policy changes, market forces, and evolving consumer attitudes. However, green lending and investment still form less than 4% of total global lending. Diverse financial institutions, including retail banks, are essential in this green transformation. Retail banks offer green products like mortgages and loans, incentivising lower-emission homes and vehicles. They also promote sustainable business practices through green lending. This new phase of retail banking, while advantageous for banks and customers, significantly contributes to a more sustainable world.

Key learning objectives:

  • Understand the role retail banks can play in the transition to a low-carbon economy

  • Outline some of the key products being offered by retail banks facilitating the transition

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This video is now available for free. It is also part of a premium, accredited video course. Sign up for a 7-day free trial to watch more.

Summary

What are the three main functions of retail banks? 

  • Deposit-taking: Retail banks allow individuals and small businesses to safely deposit money and save for the future
  • Managing payments: They provide an efficient and secure system for settling financial transactions
  • Extending credit: Retail banks provide loans and overdraft facilities, essential for individual home ownership and small business growth

How can retail banks facilitate the transition to a low-carbon economy?

Retail banks facilitate the transition to a low-carbon economy through "green" banking initiatives. These include providing green retail products such as mortgages, loans, savings, investments, and payment services that incentivise eco-friendly choices. They are also pivotal in reallocating capital away from high-carbon sectors towards environmentally friendly ones. Despite green finance currently being a small part of total lending, its rapid growth indicates a promising role for banks in supporting sustainable development.

What products are offered by retail banks facilitating the transition?

Retail banks currently offer a range of green products facilitating the transition to a low-carbon economy:

Green Deposits, Savings, and Payments: Banks like Ekobanken and Nordea provide green savings accounts, and CO2 trackers, incentivising customers to save and spend sustainably. Notable is Alipay's "AntForest" app, which promotes sustainable behaviour and supports reforestation.

Green Mortgages: Banks incentivise customers to buy energy-efficient homes or improve existing ones by offering attractive interest rates. Barclays, for instance, launched the UK's first green mortgage.

Green Vehicle Loans: Retail banks like Bank Australia incentivise customers to buy low or zero-emissions vehicles by offering favourable interest rates, tied to the vehicle's environmental impact.

Green SME Business Lending: Retail banks offer green loans to small businesses investing in sustainable practices. Banks like HSBC and Nordea Bank provide loans linked to sustainable investments and activities.

Now free to watch

This video is now available for free. It is also part of a premium, accredited video course. Sign up for a 7-day free trial to watch more.

Simon Thompson

Simon Thompson

Simon is the Chief Executive of the Chartered Banker Institute and co-author of Green Finance: Principles and Practice. He is also a former Vice President of the European Bank Training Network, and is currently Chair of the Global Banking Education Standards Committee. He specialises in professional ethics, and green and sustainable finance.

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