Stanbic IBTC Plc has called on organisations to migrate to cleaner energy sources for their operations to reduce the impact of emissions on the environment.
The Bank’s Chairman, Basil Omiyi, argued that the economy and society are wholly owned subsidiaries of the environment, and as such the use of green energy will help keep the atmosphere stable to support economic and social activities.
According to him, there must be a balance that shields the environment and society from the negative impact of economic activities now and in the future to guarantee Nigeria’s sustainable development.
Omiyi said: “Green energy is devoid of carbon emissions (unlike fossil fuel energy sources which harm the environment) and is one of the major contributors to climate change. Corporates can shift to cleaner energy sources for their operations.
“Financial institutions can help advance this shift by facilitating funding (in line with their risk appetites) which will be necessary to achieve growth in the green energy space.”
He also expressed Stanbic IBTC’s commitment to creating a greener environment across its operational locations. “At Stanbic IBTC, building environmental resilience is one of our four sustainability pillars. This pillar demonstrates our focus on environmental footprint management.”
Accordingly, the bank has continued to implement and expand on programmes to reduce its carbon emissions.
These include reducing energy consumption in office locations by using energy-efficient fittings; adoption of cleaner energy sources across the office locations, as well as the Go-Green programmes across some branch locations to reduce energy and paper consumption and improve water efficiency.
The developed world, which is disproportionally responsible, on both gross and per capita basis for the bulk of carbon emission into the atmosphere, is unwilling to drastically cut their energy consumption, as they wish to maintain the standard of living of their people.
Stanbic IBTC has also adopted tree planting programmes to help with carbon sequestration. Already, over 300 trees have been planted across Nigeria, and the number will grow significantly in the near future.
He admitted that most developing economies do not possess the capacity to implement green energy due to the technical and financial requirements, even as the developed world is responsible for the bulk of carbon emitted into the atmosphere.
Basil continued: “As you saw at COP26 (Conference of Parties 26), the world is attempting to obtain the commitment of nation states to the net-zero emission world. The developed world, which is disproportionally responsible, on both gross and per capita basis for the bulk of carbon emission into the atmosphere, is unwilling to drastically cut their energy consumption, as they wish to maintain the standard of living of their people.
“Therefore, there is a need for a just energy transition strategy that is fair to all and affordable to all.
“Knowing the urgency in halting climate change, Stanbic IBTC is working with vendors and customers to provide solutions that can help address climate change issues. This is reflected in one of our seven focus SEE Impact Areas – Climate Change and Sustainable Finance – where the Group seeks to provide financial solutions to support climate change mitigation and adaptation measures.
“We also continue to advance awareness around climate change amongst the general public; leveraging our social media platforms and webinars, for instance, the recently concluded net zero webinar.
“Similarly, our parent company, the Standard Bank Group hosted a Climate Summit in partnership with University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies. We continue to take awareness of communication initiatives by sharing practical tips that people can adopt to help address climate change.”