Net-zero: energy transition and climate action

At the heart of BNP Paribas Group’s company purpose is its ambition to become a leader in sustainable finance. For that reason, BNP Paribas has made major advancements and commitments in addressing the climate crisis and advancing the energy transition. Whether supporting our individual customers wishing to renovate their home to be more energy efficient or by helping institutions make investments with a positive climate impact, the Group supports a wide range of players, actions and innovations designed to support clean energy throughout supply chains, cut emissions, and meet our clear objective: finance a net-zero economy by 2050.

Moving forward on the pathway to a net-zero economy 

In 2021, the Group took a step forward by joining, as a founding member, the Net-Zero Banking Alliance. Created by the UN Environment Finance Initiative (UNEP FI), this alliance brings together some 40 banks seeking to contribute to the financing of a “Net Zero” economy by 2050. How? Through strong commitments to aligning the greenhouse gas emissions induced through lending and proprietary investment activities with the goal of financing a carbon neutral economy by 2050

In 2022, following the publication of the Group’s 2025 Strategic plan (Growth, Technology, Sustainability), the Group has published its first Climate Analytics and Alignment report, including a roadmap of ambitious interim targets based on International Energy Agency (IEA) scenarios for the power generation, oil & gas and automotive sectors. These key targets send a strong signal to stakeholders of how BNP Paribas intends to reach the goal of reducing emissions and supporting our clients in their transition. 

“As a founding member of the Net-Zero Banking Alliance, we are committed to aligning our credit and proprietary investment portfolios with clear objectives and science-based methodologies. Achieving this goal is a challenge not only for BNP Paribas but for the entire banking industry, as no bank can do it alone.” 

Jean-Laurent Bonnafé

Director and Chief Executive Officer, BNP Paribas

Ambitious interim targets in the highest emitting sectors

By aligning our clients’ net-zero ambitions with sustainable financing and investment solutions, BNP Paribas has demonstrated the role it plays at the centre of the real economy in the transition to a net-zero economy. With the Climate Analytics and Alignment report, the Group directly addresses how it can assist the transition of three highly emitting sectors: power generation, oil & gas, and automotive. Although those three sectors represent only 7% of the Group’s financing, thanks to the early engagements taken by BNP Paribas since 2011, their significant impact on the environment makes them key to successfully financing the transition

Interim targets set out in the report call for significant reductions in emissions across all three sectors in terms of financed carbon emissions, credit exposures, and through the increase of financing for renewable energy and sustainable mobility through more efficient vehicles. 

BNP Paribas takes a pragmatic approach to supporting our clients in their transition pathways, adapting to the specific needs of each sector and to regional market needs. The Group’s integrated model and all its businesses will be fully mobilised and committed to supporting clients in these, and other sectors, as they transition towards a sustainable and low-carbon economy.

To achieve the 2025 targets, the Group will leverage the PACTA methodology that it helped develop in open-source collaboration with other financial institutions and in particular, through the Low Carbon Transition Group. This group of low carbon experts will work with our clients to find the financial solutions they need. Fully understanding the challenges facing each of our clients, the 250 professionals of the Low Carbon Transition Group will work across the BNP Paribas Group and the wider financial market to meet those challenges and unlock their transition to net-zero.

BNP Paribas has pledged to dedicate at least 200 billion euros to supporting large corporate clients’ transition to a low carbon economy by 2025, and €350bn in sustainable savings across its commercial and investment banking business lines. 

€350bn 

 in loans and bond issues 

covering environmental and social topics for corporate clients by 2025

A history of concrete commitments in the most sensitive sectors 

These interim targets on the pathway to promoting clean energy and reducing emissions are only  the latest over the last several years of strong commitments to contribute to the fight against climate change. Since 2015, BNP Paribas has taken several key steps towards ensuring the optimal management of our activities in the most sensitive sectors and to limit global warming in line with the objectives of the Paris Agreement and in order to finance the transition towards a net-zero economy by 2050, despite geopolitical uncertainties.


2015

The Group commits to progressively aligning its credit portfolio with the objectives of the Paris Agreement. 

2017

BNP Paribas ceases all new financing of coal-fired power plant projects. 

2018

BNP Paribas no longer provides any new financial services to unconventional oil and gas specialists (shale gas, shale oil, oil sands, Arctic).  

2020

BNP Paribas accelerates the timeframe of its complete coal exit: by 2030 in OECD and EU countries, and by 2040 in the rest of the world.   

2021

BNP Paribas commits to reducing its exposure to oil and gas exploration and production by 10% by 2025 (which has since been increased to 12%). 

2022

The Group publishes its first Climate Analytics and Alignment report, including both ambitious 2025 targets for the power generation, oil & gas, and automotive sectors; as well as a pioneering commitment to reduce our credit exposure to upstream oil production by 25% by 2025, in comparison to 2020.

Funding and investment policies to guide our activities  

The Group’s sectoral policies governing our environmental impact also extend to several other sensitive sectors, including mining, pulp and paper, nuclear power, defence and palm oil.  

Collaborative and scalable: stepping up the pace of the energy transition

PACTA: an open-source methodology for aligning emissions 

In order to step up the pace of the energy transition, BNP Paribas relies notably on the Paris Agreement Capital Transition Assessment (PACTA) methodology. This open-source solution, developed by BNP Paribas and 4 other major European banks - all signatories of the Katowice Commitment in 2018 - makes it possible to align greenhouse gas emissions induced by their credit portfolios with the goals of the Paris Agreement, thus contributing to financing a carbon neutral economy by 2050

“The PACTA methodology is Open Source and aims to bring financial players together in order to align their financing with the goals of the Paris Agreement.” 
Imène Ben Rejeb-Mzah, Head of Methodology and Data, Group CSR, BNP Paribas

Four climate-related analysis pillars: Governance, Strategy, Risk Management and Indicators & Goals


TCFD: a key step for climate risk analysis and management  

In 2015, the United Nations created the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures, to improve financial transparency on climate-related risks and opportunities. The recommendations of this forum provide a common international framework for making markets more efficient and strengthening the world’s economies in the face of climate change. BNP Paribas has been a member of the Task Force since its creation, and since 2020, based on TCFD recommendations, the Group publishes a report providing a complete and accessible analysis of its financial information based on four pillars: Governance, Strategy, Risk Management, Indicators & Goals

Financing solutions to support the energy transition 

BNP Paribas supports all its clients - corporate, institutional, entrepreneurs and individuals - in their transition to a more sustainable business model.  

The world’s second largest green bond player in 2020 according to Bloomberg, with €10.8 billion as joint bookrunner, BNP Paribas actively participates in the growing Sustainability Linked Loans market, with €3.8 billion of financing based solely on environmental criteria by the end of 2020. In 2021, BNP Paribas created the Low-Carbon Transition Group: a team of experts that supports the Group’s corporate clients in their transition to a low-carbon economy.  

€22bn

in Green Bonds in 2020

as joint bookrunner according to Dealogic

The Group’s specialised subsidiaries, such as Arval (vehicle fleet management) and BNP Paribas Leasing Solutions, have also thoroughly transformed their offers to support clients, both large companies and SMEs, in their sustainable transition by developing hybrid and electric vehicle fleets and services.  

Through the Group’s Investment & Protection Services (IPS) division, business lines such as BNP Paribas Asset Management and BNP Paribas Cardif - both of which joined respectively the Net-Zero Asset Managers Inititative and Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance in 2021 - and BNP Paribas Wealth Management. They all offer innovative investment product ranges, designed to support the energy transition and move towards a more sustainable economy.

Euromoney magazine has recognised BNP Paribas as the “World’s Best Bank for Sustainable Finance” in 2021 and 2022, as well as “World’s Best ESG Data & Technology” in 2022, underlining the Group’s support for its clients around the world in their own transitions.  


Supporting environmental initiatives 

Financing innovation and clean energy

To encourage the development of renewable energies, the Group has more than doubled the amount of its financing in 5 years. Funding has increased from €7.2 billion at the end of 2015 to €18.6 billion at the end of 2021 - and in 2022, the Group committed to reach a €30 billion target by 2025. In addition, BNP Paribas recently dedicated €250 million to equity investments in start-ups that bring major innovations in the fields of the energy and ecological transition.  

The environment, a key issue for the BNP Paribas Foundation  

The Group’s Foundation supports several initiatives in favour of the environment and the energy transition, in particular research and raising public awareness of the challenges due to climate change. 

discover the BNP Paribas foundation
Energy transition

Reducing emissions and achieving carbon neutrality for the Group's own activities

 As well as supporting its clients in their transition, the Group seeks to reduce the environmental footprint of its own activities. Since 2017, BNP Paribas has contributed to collective carbon neutrality on within its operational perimeter and performs a rigorous calculation of its greenhouse gas emissions using nearly 50 indicators for an annual analysis.  

While BNP Paribas reduces its emissions by purchasing clean electricity and offsetting residual emissions, its commitment to carbon neutrality is also applied daily by its nearly 190,000 employees. Thanks to programmes such as Green Company for Employees, BNP Paribas employees around the world are taking action to reduce their own footprint at work by, for example, adjusting their means of transport  or their use of digital tools.  

3 key commitments by BNP Paribas for the energy transition by 2025

€30bn

of financing for the renewable energy sector


€250m

in funding invested in start-ups committed to the energy transition 


€200bn

In funding to support large corporate clients’ transition to a low carbon economy 


Photo credits: ©Sue Wetjen, ©Chris Zielecki