NAB: Businesses are Supporting Transition to Net-Zero

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by KnowESG
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According to NAB data, businesses are investing in electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles and other energy-efficient assets to cut operating costs and help the transition to net zero.

Credit for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles has climbed by 900% since 2020, while finance for solar assets has increased by 600%.

Andrew Irvine, NAB Group Executive, Business and Private Banking, stated that business owners are responding to the shifting economic environment, with many opting for long-term investments in a more sustainable future.

“Our customers know there are significant economic and environmental opportunities in reducing their carbon footprint, with 43% of businesses telling us they either have in place or plan to develop a net zero carbon emissions plan—that’s up 13% since 2021. Business owners want our help, and they want commercial solutions to help them transition,” Mr Irvine said.

“Right across the country, we’re seeing investments in everything from solar panels to electric cars to sustainable on-farm practices and technologies that reduce costs, reduce carbon emissions, and importantly, build resilience to climate change.

Following a successful pilot, NAB has introduced its new Agri Green loan. Customers can apply for the loan if they want to invest in approved farm techniques and technology to cut down on emissions and make the farm more resilient. NAB also provides financing for green equipment and has trained over 370 bankers in Climate Banker Training in response to customer demand for a better understanding of their transition alternatives.

“There is a clear commercial opportunity for Australian businesses as we transition to net zero. Our role is to support our customers and communities through the transition and fund the investments needed to create a strong and sustainable future,” Mr Irvine said.

One of Australia's oldest wineries, Tahbilk, is also one of the first to be certified carbon neutral. It is getting three NAB Agri Green Loans to improve its environmental reputation.

Hayley Purbrick, Tahbilk's Chief Sustainability Officer, said that NAB's help was very important for them to reach their energy transition goals.

“There are business and environmental benefits to becoming more sustainable, and I think we’re seeing a shift right across the industry when it comes to building climate resilience and sustainability into business models,” Ms Purbrick said.

“One of our biggest projects was the installation of 300kW of solar panels across three of our sites, which led to a 39% reduction in grid energy consumption, which has significantly reduced our energy costs and makes us more resilient to blackouts.”

NAB commissioned a new report in July that estimated that nearly $20 trillion in different spending will be required to assist Australia's transition to net zero emissions by 2050. The 'All Systems Go' report identifies four economic systems that must become low-emission for the transition to be successful: energy, mobility, raw material manufacturing, food, and land use. They now account for over 90% of Australia's emissions.

For more sustainable finance news

Source: NAB

To read the ‘All Systems Go’ Deloitte Access Economics report commissioned by NAB, please click here.

To read NAB’s Climate Report, 2022, please click here.

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