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Some Big Six banks pulling ahead of others on climate policy: report

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TORONTO — A report by a climate advocacy group shows that some Canadian banks are pulling ahead of others on climate policy now that they’ve all laid out their initial net-zero plans.

The report card by Investors for Paris Compliance shows some of the differences emerging among bank policies including the ambition of their targets, what those targets cover, and overall how much detail and transparency the banks have provided.

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It finds that all banks lag on setting targets to reduce their total financed emissions from the oil and gas sector, though BMO did set an absolute target for one aspect of the category, while TD got the best marks for its targets by setting higher goals that covered more of the bank’s operations.

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The report also found TD was a little ahead on the disclosure side since it revealed its total financed emissions, including from loans and underwriting across all geographies, unlike some other banks.

RBC, which was last to lay out its interim targets when it released them last month, lagged in the most categories in part because of the levels of its aimed reductions in financed oil and gas emissions, as well as from the aspects of its business it didn’t include in the targets, such as underwriting.

The bank deferred to the Canadian Bankers Association for comment, which issued a general statement noting that banks in Canada are committed to doing their part to address climate change, and acknowledge that firm commitments are required to meet the goal of a net-zero economy.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 23, 2022.

Companies in this story: (TSX:RY; TSX:BMO: TSX:TD)


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