Bigger Story This article is part of ING's Annual Review 2015. read the 2015 Annual review

Driving sustainable progress

Integral to the Bank’s Think Forward strategy is our focus on driving sustainable progress. ING believes that financial services play a significant role in creating a sustainable world. As part of a differentiating client experience, Wholesale Banking encourages and supports clients’ sustainable transitions throughout its whole portfolio. It monitors and assesses transactions for sustainable features that make these transitions possible. Wholesale Banking also actively engages with clients to generate new business opportunities in sustainable financing. We believe this emphasis on clients that adopt sustainable practices is helping to ensure a healthy and strong portfolio.

ING’s approach builds on a strong Environmental and Social Risk (ESR) framework that is applicable to ING’s Wholesale Banking business. In addition to an ESR assessment, lending clients and transactions are reviewed against externally recognised sustainability criteria, so the Bank can measure and track how much of its portfolio is sustainable.

In 2015, our total sustainable transitions financed was EUR 23.8 billion, covering business areas such as renewable energy, sustainable real estate and public transport. This is an increase of 22% on last year’s performance.

Sustainable transitions financed
(in EUR million) 2015 2014
ING Groenbank 1 875 836
Loans to renewable energy projects 2 3,187 1,730
Loans to sustainable real estate 3 998 389
Loans to other projects 4 1,274 379
Loans to environmental outperformers 5 17,470 16,142
Total 23,804 19,476
1) ING Groenbank finances projects within and outside of the Netherlands. In line with Dutch Tax authority guidelines the amount of green loans on the Groenbank balance sheet is over 70%. For more details on ING Groenbank, please see the Retail Banking chapter.
2) Includes biomass, geothermal, hydro, solar, offshore and onshore wind power generation.
3) As of year-end 2015, ING reports separately on sustainable real estate, which used to be reported under Loans to other projects.
4) Includes projects involving energy efficiency, greenhouse gas reduction, climate change and mitigation, waste-to-energy, public transport, waste reduction and social welfare.
5) As of year-end 2014, ING reports on loans to clients who have been identified as environmental outperformers based on an independent reputable data provider or internal client assessments.