Rabobank and Friends of the Earth take the same view: climate action is needed

On January 13, 2022 Friends of the Earth requested Rabobank and 29 other companies to share their plans on how they will reduce carbon emissions by 45% in 2030. Rabobank welcomes this action because we share the concern that action to tackle climate change can and must be accelerated. Rabobank therefore wants to help its customers in the coming years to implement the changes needed to reach a climate-neutral economy and a more sustainable food supply.

Rabobank helps customers become more sustainable

“Many people are rightly concerned about the consequences of climate change, and we share those concerns,” says Aafke Keizer, director Sustainability at Rabobank. “It is our mission to help customers achieve the Paris climate goals and to help everyone become more sustainable. We help farmers who want to introduce more sustainable practices, we help families who want to insulate their homes and we help the local baker who wants to switch to renewable energy. As a bank we of course use financial products and services to achieve this but we also offer sound advice and a solid network.” Rabobank’s chair of the Managing Board Wiebe Draijer and Global Head of Food System Transition Bas Rüter invited Friends of the Earth to discuss approach to the climate transition and how we see our role in financing it.

Climate action is needed

Like many other organizations Rabobank is committed to the goals set in the Paris Climate Agreement and in the Dutch Climate Agreement. Under the Dutch Climate Agreement banks must report this year on how they want to help their customers reach the Dutch climate targets on time. The sustainability policy is also scrutinized by the regulator, the European Central Bank. In addition, Rabobank is a member of the UN’s Net-Zero Banking Alliance whose members are committed to transparency on how they intend to achieve the Paris climate goals.

“We want to do this well and are taking a thorough approach,” says Aafke Keizer. “For many of the sectors in which Rabobank operates there is still no scientific consensus on the measurement methods, for instance for many agricultural sectors. We are working hard on this topic with international partners and with Wageningen University & Research. At the end of this year, we will publish more details about how, together with our customers, we are giving shape to the Dutch Climate Agreement and the road to achieving the Paris climate goals. In pursuit of this and to show our progress so far, we recently presented a calculation of the climate footprint of our customers. We are the first major bank in the Netherlands to disclose this information. In parallel we are already providing clients with customized products to reduce their climate footprint. We all agree that there’s no time to lose when it comes to combating climate change.”

Read Rabobank’s response to the letter from Friends of the Earth.

Published: April 14 2022, 16:00 CET

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