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HSBC Announces $100M Partnership to Measure, Address Global Climate Change

At a breakfast press conference on Wednesday morning at its North American headquarters in Midtown, HSBC announced a five-year, $100 million partnership to address global climate change. The world’s third-largest bank will work with The Climate Group, Earthwatch Institute, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, and the World Wildlife Fund in order to quantify the impact of climate change on the world’s cities, forests, and rivers through extensive field research. The bank will also educate its 300,000 employees on sustainable principles, designating approximately 3,000 as “climate champions” who will disseminate knowledge and acquired field experience to their local communities. The donation by HSBC is the largest ever by a British company. Paul Lawrence, President and CEO of HSBC, N.A., stated at the press conference that “[b]y working with four of the world’s most respected environmental organizations and creating a ‘green taskforce’ of thousands of HSBC employees worldwide, we believe we can tackle the cause and impacts of climate change.”

I am enthusiastic about the bank’s commitment to obtaining empirical data in the field- from forests to oceans to cities- about the impacts of climate change. Much of what’s been written on this web log has called for objectivity in analyzing claims about performance in the green building context. What HSBC has proposed is entirely consonant with that goal (obviously on a much broader and more profound scale), and I applaud Lawrence and his HSBC colleagues for taking this significant and worthwhile initiative with its four partners.

My thanks to Paul McGinniss, Hill & Knowlton, and Francine Minadeo at HSBC for coordinating gbNYC’s invitation to Wednesday morning’s event.

One Response to HSBC Announces $100M Partnership to Measure, Address Global Climate Change

  1. Jim Bell June 10, 2007 at 7:31 pm #

    I saw a recent article in Government Computing News: GSA paves way for IT-based buildings that explains how the state of Missouri is achieving upwards to $30M in savings using some IT/Energy solution, on existing infrastructure, from some firm named Gridlogix.

    The state seems to have a pretty novel approach to achieve a large near term savings. While the Ice Caps melt, maybe its time to look for better technology oriented solutions.

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