Commonwealth Bank of Australia

RATING

SECTOR

Banking

WEBSITE

CONTACT

Darling Park Tower 1,
201 Sussex Street, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Tel: +61 2 9999 3283
E-mail: info@commbank.com.au

STOCK EXCHANGE

LISTING

  • Commonwealth Bank is listed on the FTSE4Good Index, demonstrating strong ESG practices since 2009.
  • Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI): Commonwealth Bank reports on sustainability practices undertaken across the Group.
  • MSCI
  • CDP

EMPLOYEES

42,720

SUSTAINABILITY MANAGER

Sanjeet Singh

AWARDS

Copy and paste awards here.  Should be in bullet format.

CONTENT SOURCE

FURTHER READING

Report created by Maribel Sabino

 

Commonwealth Bank of Australia

SECTIONS :  Sustainability •  Targets   Evaluation  •  Key Points  •  Overview

Company Activity

Commonwealth Bank of Australia was founded in 1911 and is headquartered in Sydney, Australia. The bank is Australia’s leading provider of integrated financial services. Its services include retail, premium, business, and institutional banking, funds management, superannuation, insurance, investment and share broking products and services. 

CommBank operates through the following segments:

  • Retail Banking Services
  • Business and Private Banking
  • Institutional Banking and Markets
  • Wealth Management
  • New Zealand; Bankwest
  • International Financial Services and Other.

CommBank has branches in Asia, Europe, New Zealand and North America.

Commonwealth Bank’s business strategy is to deliver balanced and sustainable outcomes for its customers, community, people, and shareholders.  CommBank’s initiatives and focus areas are financial education, contributing to the community, and good business practices.

Company Sustainability Activity

Commonwealth Bank is committed to sustainable and responsible business practices in accordance with Environmental and Social Policy, which outlines the bank’s commitments and targets to manage the risks and identify opportunities.

The bank supports its customer and clients by providing products that incentivize emissions reduction and increase climate resilience. In 2020, CommBank’s institutional bank has provided sustainability-linked loans that tie the borrower’s cost of funding to the achievement of emissions reduction targets. In addition, CommBank’s green mortgage initiative has cashback to eligible customers with solar panels installed in their homes. CommBank embeds its human rights commitments through its operations and supply chain management. 

CommBank’s commitment to sustainability includes delivering balanced and sustainable outcomes for its stakeholders by supporting customers, investing in communities and people, implementing good business practices, and addressing climate change.

CommBank manages environmental and social risks in its operations, lending activities, and superannuation and investment business. This includes minimizing its environmental footprint and supporting the transition to a low carbon economy, as well as identifying and improving human rights impacts through their value chain.

CommBank reports its initiatives through the following frameworks: TCFD, SASB, and Global Reporting Initiative (GRI Standards).

Highlights

Financial Education

  • CommBank helps people acquire the skills the economy and society need, and help prepare for the workforce of the future.

Community Contribution

  • CommBank invests in improving the well-being of people, businesses, and communities and actively does so in a range of ways.

Good Business Practices

  • CommBank is focused on making transparent and balanced business decisions that support positive social, economic, and environmental outcomes.

Targets

Sustainable Business Practices

  • Support the responsible transition to a net-zero emissions economy by 2050.
    • Partner with clients and incentivizing measurable action through sustainability-linked loans.
    • Support increased renewable energy generation while reducing its exposure to coal over time.
    • Use the business lending assessed emissions analysis to identify priority areas for reducing emissions.
  • Achieve Climate Active carbon neutrality certification for Australian FY21 emissions.
  • Low Carbon Target to make $15 billion of funding available to Low Carbon Projects by 2025.
  • 2. Be 0t CO2-e per FTE by 2020.

Climate Risk Management

  • Continue to reduce CommBank’s exposures to thermal coal mining and coal-fired power generation, with a view to exiting the sectors by 2030, subject to Australia having a secure energy platform.
  • Only providing Banking and Financing activity to new oil, gas or metallurgical coal projects if supported by an assessment of the environmental, social, and economic impacts of such activity, and if in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement.
  • Recognize and support gas as a transition fuel, while working with CommBank’s customers in accordance with its own climate scenario analysis, which is informed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change guidance.

Advancing Reconciliation

  • CommBank is committed to increasing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representation in its domestic workforce to 3% by 2026.

Creating a diverse, inclusive culture

  • Achieve 47–50% of women in Executive Manager and above roles by 2025.

Progress

Sustainable Business Practices

  • Sourced 100% of Australian electricity from renewable energy.
  • Increased lending to low carbon and renewable energy projects.
  • Increased onsite renewable energy generation capacity using solar photovoltaic (PV) panels to 1,510kW at 80 sites across the country.
  • In February 2020, CommBank released its Green, Social and Sustainability Funding Framework outlining the governance and asset eligibility criteria for Sustainable Funding Instruments issued by CBA.

Incentive-based finance for sustainable outcomes

  • In 2020, CommBank’s institutional bank and Wesfarmers signed a $400 million three-year bilateral sustainability-linked loan aimed to help the company meet its ambitious social and environmental targets, linked to Indigenous employment and reduced carbon emissions intensity.
  • In July 2019, we provided $150 million of debt funding to Queensland Airports Limited (QAL) for the Gold Coast Airport redevelopment, with $75 million provided in the form of a sustainability-linked loan.

Creating a diverse, inclusive culture

  • CommBank achieved the goals set in 2015 to increase the number of women in leadership roles.

Responsible Investing

  • CommBank’s investment and superannuation business, Colonial First State (CFS), has exited all investments in companies associated with the production of tobacco and controversial weapons across its bond and equity portfolios. The exclusion applies to all fund managers engaged by CFS, and was achieved as of 31 December 2019.

Certificates

  • New Zealand operations (ASB) have achieved Toitū carbon zero certification from Toitū Envirocare

UN Sustainable Development Goals

UN SDGs Compliance

The Impakter Index aligns Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s sustainability initiatives with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

SDG 3: Good Health and Well-being

  • CommBank’s priority has been the safety, health, and wellbeing of its people. To ensure the bank maintains essential banking services and meets the surge in customer demand for assistance during COVID-19, CommBank quickly adapted its branches and offices to maintain physical distancing and keep people and customers safe.
  • CommBank scaled its remote working technologies allowing more than 39,000 people and delivery partners to work from home.

SDG 4: Quality Education

  • CommBank has a longstanding commitment to financial education to help the next generation make smart decisions about their financial wellbeing, through school banking and Start Smart programs.
  • More than 3.9 million school-aged students have now received financial education through Start Smart, CommBank’s award-winning financial education initiative. The free program was founded in 2007 and is designed to give young Australians the skills and confidence to make good decisions about money.
  • In 2020, CommBank created Start Smart Digital to take facilitators into online classrooms across the nation. More than 11,000 students have participated in online learning sessions to date.

SDG 5: Gender Equality

  • CommBank is committed to gender pay equity and reviews it throughout the year as part of its remuneration review process.

SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities

  • Through CommBank’s Reconciliation Action Plan, the company is committed to achieving parity for Indigenous representation in its workforce.
  • CommBank’s employee-led networks play an important role in promoting inclusion and informing solutions for its people and customers. They include WeCAN (gender equality), Yana Budjari (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and cultures), Unity (sexual orientation and gender identity), Mosaic (cultural diversity), AdvantAge (life-stage and age), and Enable (accessibility and inclusion for people with a disability).

SDG 13: Climate Action

  • CommBank is committed to limiting climate change in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement and supporting the responsible global transition to net zero emissions by 2050.
  • Embed climate considerations into strategy, business, and risk management processes.

SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals

  • To drive step-change innovation CommBank partners with start-ups, fintechs, scientists, research institutes, and large market-leading companies. 

Evaluation

Commonwealth Bank of Australia is committed to sustainability. The bank is dedicated to delivering balanced and sustainable outcomes, and business practices. CommBank achieves this by investing in communities and people, implementing good business practices and addressing climate change. 

CommBank is on the path to minimizing its environmental footprint and supporting the transition to a low carbon economy. Its targets include achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 and reducing its exposure to coal with prospects of exiting the sector by 2030. CommBank has made progress in adopting and meeting 100% of its Australian electricity needs with renewable energy.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia is a signatory to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. However, the bank does not explicitly align its goals with specific targets. CommBank is listed on numerous indices, such as FTSE4Good, DJSI, MSCI and CDP.

Despite its goals to exit the coal sector, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia has actively contributed $6.243 B in the oil and gas industry since 2016. Its investments increased from 2019 to 2020.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia has been rated a C.

Analyst Outlook: Neutral

Commonwealth Bank is on the path to sustainability. The bank would benefit from implementing specific and measurable goals that align with its initiatives and frameworks. Receiving sustainability certifications for the company as a whole would take CommBank from a company that is mediocre in sustainability to one that is sustainable.

Key Points

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