Sustainable business operations
Less and greener. Whether you’re talking about energy consumption, car kilometres or paper – Rabobank has a longstanding commitment to operating as sustainably as possible. And it’s producing effects.
Rabobank has been operating 100% climate neutral since 2007. CO2 emissions per full-time employee were also 35% lower in 2015 than in 2008. This is partly because buildings and equipment, such as lighting, now require less energy. The bank is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions per employee by another 10% compared to 2013 levels by 2020. Rabobank calculates CO2 emissions per employee according to the internationally recognised Greenhouse Gas Protocol. It compensates its CO2 emissions by purchasing so-called emission rights (Voluntary Emission Reductions).
Lower and greener energy consumption
With a view to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, Rabobank is dedicated to reducing and greening its energy consumption. One way it does this is by renovating office buildings and introducing energy-saving measures. Rabobank adheres to a lower energy performance standard than is legally required when constructing new buildings and renovating existing ones.
Rabobank purchases 95% green electricity in the Netherlands, with this percentage standing at approximately 30% outside the Netherlands. The green gas Rabobank purchases in the Netherlands comes from fermentation plants.
Less paper, less waste
Rabobank believes it is important to operate digitally and paperless, both within its own organisation and in communications with customers. Most employees consequently no longer receive paper salary strips and Rabobank also asks its customers to switch to digital bank statements. Thanks in part to these measures, the flow of waste paper and other waste per full-time employee at Rabobank in the Netherlands was about 40% lower in 2015 than in 2013. The amount of residual waste has been reduced by 30%. At the end of their service life at the bank, PCs are sent to schools in developing countries. Rabobank has entered into a covenant with Close the Gap for this purpose.
Rabobank encourages employees to travel to work by bicycle or public transport. The use of flexible workstations and working hours ('the new way of working') makes it easier for employees to work from home and to travel outside rush hours. Rabobank’s lease scheme motivates employees who are eligible for a lease car to opt for more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly models.
Procurement plays a key role in sustainable operations. By critically reviewing its procurement policy, Rabobank exercises influence over the environmental and social aspects of production processes and the products to be procured. Rabobank requires suppliers to sign a sustainability statement.
Even seemingly small things can play a big part in sustainability. Take the coffee beans used in the coffee machines at Rabobank’s offices on Croeselaan in Utrecht, the Netherlands for example. They’re climate neutral and have been awarded the Max Havelaar and EKO quality marks. These coffee beans consequently produce 124,000 kilos fewer greenhouse gases than the coffee beans Rabobank previously used. The coffee cups are made from cane sugar waste and produce 65% less CO2 than plastic cups. They’re 100% compostable and are collected separately.
Sustainability at Rabobank goes beyond only CO2, energy and climate. The coffee beans used at its offices in Utrecht for example are both climate neutral and come from plantations at which Rabobank Foundation helps small farmers improve their position.