Piraeus Bank is a pioneer in supporting and funding investments aimed at environmentally and socially responsible actions, just as it has been a leader in managing its environmental impacts. In this context and fully respecting its commitment to support Green Business, the Bank has created a series of green banking products and advisory services, supporting investors through the Development Programs Advisor that service the Bank’s entire branch network.
The knowhow and expertise that has been acquired in green business allows the Bank to provide full support to investors and guidance at each step of their investment, from setting the initial steps of the investment plan and the necessary licensing procedure to the project realisation.
Piraeus Bank has financed 1,017 MW of RES projects as of year-end 2016. These power plants produce 2,014 GWh of clean energy on an annual basis. The operation of these RES projects saves many pollutants among others 2.12 million tons of CO2 on an annual basis.
Apart from the obvious environmental benefit, this reduction also has indirect benefits for society. Applying the European Environment Agency’s methodology (see report “Revealing the costs of air pollution from industrial facilities in Europe. EEA Technical Report No.15/2011”, (http://www.eea.europa.eu/publications/cost-of-air-pollution) in the case of the RES portfolio of Piraeus Bank, we came to the following conclusions.
- Avoidance of 16 premature deaths related to air pollution.
- Gain of 17,850 working days (calculated as absences from work due to illnesses related to air pollution).
- The “external environmental benefit” is estimated to € 105.8 mil. per year (€ 34.6 mil due to non-exposure to “classic” pollutants, and € 71,2 mil. related to CO2).
Aiming to strengthen green business, a Development Programs Advisor has been appointed to selected Bank branches in Greece for more effective promotion of green products and services. Piraeus Bank’s green products provide financial support to projects such as renewable energy sources, energy-saving, green transport, alternative waste management, organic farming, ecotourism-agrotourism, thereby indirectly resolving multiple environmental problems, such as those of climate change, depletion of natural resources as well as water and land pollution. Furthermore, Development Programs Advisors provide specialized advisories to professionals and individuals interested in reducing their environmental and carbon footprint, their operational costs and, ultimately, in protecting the environment through their business activity.