Wells Fargo, the US banking giant, initially set itself a target to invest $1 billion in environmental projects by 2010; but it far outstripped this, investing more than $3 billion by the end of 2008. Last year it invested a record $2.8 billion and has just recently announced new plans to make $30 billion of loans and investment available by 2020, to help build a greener economy. The money will be invested in wind and solar energy projects, energy efficient buildings, environmental innovation, and environmentally responsible public financing.
Wells Fargo are not the only financial institution investing large amounts; last year Bank of America announced it had invested $11.6 billion in environmental projects since 2007 and had plans to increase that to $20 billion by 2017. Only a few years ago $1 billion seemed like a huge amount of money, but now the size of investments made are much larger.
Wells Fargo have also stated that they will make an extra $100 million available in community grants for grassroots environmental projects by 2020, and $1 billion for investment in environmental initiatives in low-to-moderate income communities.
CEO John Stumpf said that, “our commitment to the environment reflects our belief that Wells Fargo's responsibility as a corporation goes beyond its mission of helping customers succeed financially. We also have a major role to play in promoting the long-term economic prosperity and quality of life of the communities we serve.”
Along with increased investment in environmental ventures, Wells Fargo also plans to increase the efficiency of its own energy consumption by 40 percent, reduce its waste by 65 percent, reduce total carbon emissions by 35 percent compared to levels in 2008, and earn LEED certifications for 35 percent of its buildings.
By. James Burgess of Oilprice.com
James Burgess studied Business Management at the University of Nottingham. He has worked in property development, chartered surveying, marketing, law, and accounts. He has also…