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The sustainability challenge for corporate treasury

The very future of mankind is at risk. In 2015, the United Nations set out 17 sustainable development goals to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity*:

But to achieve this requires a major change in the way how companies do business. 

Lloyds Bank in their thought-provoking session at the ACT Annual conference last week showed the benefits of sustainable business:

Source & Copyright©2019 - Lloyds Bank Group 

Lloyds initiatives and targets

Lloyds Bank Group showed how they have introduced several initiatives to help their clients become more sustainable:

  • Commercial Real Estate:  discounted Green Loans to improve estate energy efficiency 
  • Renewable Energy Sector:  in 2018 launched a new target to help provide power for five million homes by 2020
  • Funding ‘green’ London buses
  • Etc.

And their admirable sustainability targets for 2018 were:

Source & Copyright©2019 - Lloyds Bank Group 

Corporate practices

David Morgan, Senior Treasury Manager, Thames Water described how they are becoming a more sustainable and responsible business using green bonds and financing which have the interest rate pegged to their ‘green’ performance.

Inest Faden, Treasurer, Tideway in their green bond issuance explained how they had used S&P to do the green evaluation of their green bond.

There is now a Corporate Forum on Sustainable Finance which is designed as a permanent network for exchanging views and ideas, brings together dynamic “Green Issuers” committed to upholding and developing sustainable finance as a critical tool to fight climate change and to foster a more sustainable and responsible society, see.

Key points from the question and answer session revealed:

  • Green bonds are great, note that there is:
    • More work to get green accreditation and manage the programme
    • % Rate can be lower than ordinary financing
    • Lots of demand for green bonds: a year ago it was 3% of funding, now at 10%+, and more banks are getting involved
  • To get started with green bonds:
    • Talk to your banks and your peers
    • Set yourself goals as to what want to achieve
    • Make sure that the green bond programme is given full recognition internally
    • More regulation is coming and probably “you’ll have to issue a green bond in future”, so it is better to get started now.


* United Nations

CTMfile take: Sustainability programmes are increasing slowly and interest is growing among corporate treasurers (this session was packed out), but as Inest Faden pointed out, “There is a long way to go”, Also climate change is growing far faster than the interest in sustainable financing.

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