Finance firms get practical over climate change issue

14 December 2007
A group of finance and insurance firms are taking steps to tackle climate change through a series of discussions and actions intended to acknowledge the part played by such companies in the current state of the environment as well as helping to 'green' the reputation of UK finance corporations.

The Forge Group of companies which includes Aviva, Abbey, HBOS, Lloyds TSB Bank, Old Mutual, Prudential, Royal and Sun Alliance Insurance Group, Standard Chartered and Standard Life, have collaborated on their latest guide which aims to address the topic of climate change with a view to helping businesses examine how best to effect 'green' changes to their working practices.

Managing Climate Change in Financial Services: A Guidance Framework, looks at how key corporate functions (such as strategy, risk and procurement) and business lines (such as retail banking, asset management and general insurance) can meet the challenges presented by climate change.

Each chapter contains a list of practical actions for readers at six business levels: strategy, policy, procedures, management, monitoring, and reporting.

Richard Cooper of Lloyds TSB and Chair of the Forge Group explains the thinking behind the Group's latest offering: "This guide deals with the facts and practical implications of the environmental challenges facing us this century.

"Our aim is to provide financial firms with the latest intelligence on how climate change issues could affect their business, and how they might meet these challenges."

While Mr Cooper emphasises that the group doesn't expect organisations to implement every single point outlined in the guide, he hopes that companies will see that they can easily implement changes that will have an impact on their carbon output.

"We do believe that climate change presents one of the biggest challenges to 21st century business," he said, "and that we have a key role in creating a genuinely low carbon economy."

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