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The PCAF Dutch group unveils a new carbon accounting report at COP25


In their latest report, presented Wednesday at the climate summit in Madrid, 17 Dutch financial institutions including Rabobank show the progress that has been made with the carbon accounting method of the Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF). New asset classes have been added to the methodology and new tools are available for the growing number of financial companies who want to use the PCAF methodology. Participating institutions in the Netherlands represent €2 trillion of assets under management, many of whom already publicly disclose the associated carbon footprint.

The Dutch group pioneered the development of a methodology to assess the carbon emissions of financial institution’s loans and investments. This groundbreaking approach has been the catalyst for a global movement of institutions who assess their emissions with a view, ultimately, to align their impact with the Paris Climate Goals.

Triodos Bank’s Spanish Managing Director, Mikel Garcia, and FMO Jorim Schraven, Director of Impact and ESG at Dutch development bank, FMO, presented the report, Accounting CHG emissions and taking action: harmonized approach for the financial sector in the Netherlands, to Marcel Beukeboom, Climate Emissary of the Dutch government during the climate summit in Madrid.

Align portfolio with Paris climate agreement
PCAF chair Piet Sprengers (ASN Bank): “PCAF plays an important role in allowing the financial sector to make the transition to a positive, low carbon future. By making their CO2 emissions transparent, financial companies are taking a very important step to ultimately align their portfolio with the Paris Climate Agreement. Today’s report shows that PCAF provides a simple and powerful way to start measuring and reporting on their climate impact. We call on the financial sector to start assessing the emissions of their loans and investments, to reduce their finance of fossil assets and actively support the transition to a low carbon economy of the future.”

Wiebe Draijer, chairman of the Managing Board of Rabobank, about the report: ‘We welcome this report as a further development of the measurement of the carbon footprint of banks’ balance sheets. To meet the Dutch Climate Agreement and the Paris goals it is required that our clients and society at large halve the emissions by 2030 compared to 1990 level.  PCAF can help to make the challenge visible and to monitor progress. ‘
In the report, Rabobank describes an initial exploration of the credit portfolio of its local banks. The results are further improved with in collaboration with RIVM and CBS.

Global movement
PCAF started in the Netherlands in 2015, when ASN Bank took this initiative during the climate summit in Paris. Eleven Dutch financial institutions joined this first effort of its kind by the financial industry, for the financial industry. PCAF has now become a worldwide standard. To date, 57 financial institutions from around the world have joined and committed to measure and report on their CO2 emissions. They represent $3.5 trillion in total assets.
The ambition of PCAF is to grow this number to 100 institutions worldwide within three years. In the future, the group believes that measuring and disclosing CO2 impact should become common practice across the entire financial sector.

Science based targets
An important next step in the development of PCAF is to use insights from assessing greenhouse gas emissions to set science-based targets. These targets will help ensure financial institutions play their part in keeping the global increase in temperature within safe levels.

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