Strategically linking the so-called real economy and the capital markets, the banking sector is in a critically unique position to contribute to the transition to a greener and more inclusive economy.

With a membership of over 120 leading banks across the world, including the main international banks, regional leaders as well as development banks and specialized environmental banks, UNEP FI gathers together the largest group of banks on matters of sustainability and sustainable development. The work of the governance body, the Banking Committee, is steered by a Board of Commission representatives made up of senior executives from global banks.

UNEP FI’s banking related activities fall under the following broad categories.

  • Awareness-raising
  • Providing technical research and guidance
  • Promoting policy dialogue and engagement

Climate Risk & Performance
Climate Change is one of UNEP FI’s core themes. The key areas of focus for banking practitioners include:

  • Understanding portfolio carbon risk
  • Defining and measuring climate performance
  • A dedicated training programme on climate change risks and opportunities

Natural Capital Valuation
Ecosystems Management is one of UNEP FI’s core themes. This theme is organized first and foremost through the Natural Capital Declaration, a partnership with the Global Canopy Programme. Key areas of focus for banking practitioners include:

  • Mapping of natural capital risks
  • Environmental stress-testing
  • Soft commodity supply chains

Banking & Human Rights
Over the years, UNEP FI has developed guidance on human rights and broader social issues and is actively supporting the exploration of the links between environmental issues such as climate change and human rights / social issues. Key resources for banking practitioners include:

  • Human Rights Guidance Tool
  • Legal Analysis of Banking & Human Rights

Training and professional development
UNEP FI has a range of training offerings, both online and in workshop format, covering several themes. For further information on each of these services, please visit the Sustainable Finance Training section.


Simone Dettling
[email protected]

  • Norway’s DNB is twelfth leading bank to join UNEP FI’s TCFD implementation pilot project

    31 July 2017 We are pleased that UNEP FI member, DNB, has become the twelfth leading bank to join our pilot project to implement the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). This follows the announcement in early July that eleven of UNEP FI’s banking members not only welcomed the recommendations but […]

  • Eleven UNEP FI Member Banks Representing Over $ 7 Trillion are First in Industry to Jointly Pilot the TCFD Recommendations

    11 July, 2017 Eleven of the world’s leading banks announced on 11 July, 2017 that they will work together with UNEP FI to develop analytical tools and indicators to strengthen their assessment and disclosure of climate-related risks and opportunities. Following the late June publication of the final recommendations by the Financial Stability Board’s (FSB) Task […]

  • UNEP FI signatory Shinhan Bank launches a new green loan program

    On April 6th, Shinhan Bank launched its ‘Green Management Firm Loan Program’ with the South Korean Ministry of Environment and KEITI, a UNEP FI Supporting Institution. The program allots USD 87 million for Eco-friendly Small and Medium Entersprises, and loans are made with interest rates of up to 1.3% lower that existing programs. This is […]

  • ABBANK becomes first UNEP FI member in Vietnam

      An Binh Commercial Joint Stock Bank (ABBANK), the fastest growing retail bank in Vietnam, has become the first UNEP FI member in the country. ABBANK prides itself as one of the first banks to adopt the Bank of Vietnam’s directive to promote green credit growth and manage environmental and social risks in financial operations, […]

  • 19 leading global banks and investors totaling $6.6 trillion in assets launch Principles for Positive Impact Finance

    Paris, 30 January 2017

    Today, 19 leading global banks and investors totaling $6.6 trillion in assets, launched the Principles for Positive Impact Finance at an event in Paris. The programme of the event is available here.

    Read the press release in English and in French.

  • ANT Financial Services and UN Environment launch Green Digital Finance Alliance

    On Thursday 19 January 2017, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, UNEP FI member ANT Financial Services and UN Environment launched the ‘Green Digital Finance Alliance’ a ground-breaking initiative to harness digital technologies in catalyzing financing that addresses global environmental challenges. Financing sustainable development is one of the greatest challenge of our times. To […]

  • Chinese online payment provider Ant Financial joins UNEP FI

    Chinese online payment provider Ant Financial joins UNEP FI Ant Financial Services Group has become the first Fintech company to join UN Environment Programme Finance Initiative’s network ofmore than 200 financial institution signatories. Ant Financial’s signing of the UNEP FI Statement of Commitment by Financial Institutions on Sustainable Development represents the online payments services providers’ recognition of the role of the […]

  • The Association of Banks in Jordan joins UNEP Finance Initiative as Supporting Institution

    On 16 October 2016, the Association of Banks in Jordan (ABJ) joined UNEP FI as a Supporting Institution, becoming the second Banking Association in the region to join under this status. The Association, which is an umbrella to 25 Banks in Jordan, seeks to advance the banking business in the country and plays an active […]

  • BASA signs agreement to join UNEP FI as Supporting Institution

    On 27 May 2016, the Banking Association South Africa (BASA) signed an agreement to join UNEP FI as a supporting partner becoming the first Banking Industry Association in Africa and third globally, to achieve a Supporting Institution Status. This partnership comes in celebration of 15 years of collaboration between UNEP FI and BASA, a collaboration dating […]

  • Union of Arab Banks (UAB) first institution in the Arab region to join UNEP Finance Initiative as Supporting Institution

    On 12 May 2016, the Union of Arab Banks became the second institution globally and first regionally to join UNEP FI under the Supporting Institution Status. Following the formalization of the partnership agreement under the Supporting Institutions, UNEP FI partnered with the UAB for the 2016 International Arab Banking Summit that took place in Rome […]

  • Principles for Positive Impact Finance

    The Principles for Positive Impact Finance provide guidance for financiers and investors to analyse, monitor and disclose the social, environmental and economic impacts of the financial products and services they deliver. They provide a global framework applicable across different business lines, including retail and wholesale lending, corporate and investment lending, and asset management. The Principles require […]

  • Guide to Banking and Sustainability – Edition 2

    The Guide to Banking and Sustainability (“Guide”) is a high-level, functional overview of what a sustainable bank looks like from inside and to the outside. Who and what is it meant for? The Guide is first and foremost a tool for banking practitioners themselves. It is meant as an awareness-raising, integration and outreach tool for: […]

  • Positive Impact Manifesto

    The Positive Impact Manifesto invites banks and other financial sector players to think more holistically about their role in the economy, society and the broader environment, and proposes a ‘Roadmap’ to establishing a new, impact-based and market-driven paradigm: positive impact finance. Positive Impact finance is defined in the Manifesto as “that which verifiably produces a […]

  • Banking & Sustainability: Time for Convergence

    A Policy Briefing on the links between Financial Stability and Environmental Sustainability
    Read more

  • Stability & Sustainability in Banking Reform: Are Environmental Risks Missing in Basel III?

    Analyses whether and how Basel III addresses systemic environmental risks.
    Executive Briefing French Portuguese Spanish Japanese version

  • UNEP FI Guide to Banking & Sustainability

    Understanding and Implementing Sustainability in your Bank based on the UNEP Statement of Commitment by Financial Institutions on Sustainable Development