Banking Environment Initiative (BEI)


Name of initiative Banking Environment Initiative (BEI)
LPAA initiative No
NAZCA Initiative No
Website address
Related initiatives
Starting year 2010
End year
Secretariat University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), 1 Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 1QA, Annabel Ross, Senior Programme Manager,
Organisational structure
Geographical coverage Global
Name of lead organisation
Type of lead organisation Network/Consortium/Partnership
Location/Nationality of lead organisation United Kingdom


Description The Banking Environment Initiative (BEI) is a group of global banks, convened by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), committed to pioneering actionable pathways towards a sustainable economy. The BEI co-produces horizon scanning applied research, banking sector engagement and cross-cutting academic and industry collaborations. It is a member-led, not-for-profit group, initiated in 2010 with the support of The Prince of Wales.
Objectives BEI's mission is to lead the banking industry in collectively directing capital towards environmentally and socially sustainable economic development.

In 2010, the Consumer Goods Forum (CGF)'s Board of Directors committed their 400 members, representing a combined procurement power of over $3 trillion, to achieving zero net deforestation in their supply chains by 2020. The 'Soft Commodities' Compact was the result of two years of extensive collaboration between the Banking Environment Initiative (BEI) and the CGF, with advice from WWF, to align the banking industry with this goal. The Compact was endorsed by the CGF Board in December 2013, welcomed by the Obama Administration at a White House meeting shortly after, and used to exemplify powerful industry-to-industry partnerships at a special session of the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos in January 2014. The banks that have now adopted the Compact account for approximately 50 per cent of global trade finance.

Activities Capacity building and knowledge generation, leveraging the University of Cambridge’s research and academic excellence.

Development of tools and frameworks that enhance sustainability best practice in the banking sector. Dialogue and network engagement with CISL’s sustainable finance, business and policy sustainability leadership communities.

Participants is the BEI comprises 10 banks from Asia to Europe and the Americas: Barclays, BNY Mellon, China Construction Bank, Deutsche Bank, Lloyds Banking Group, Nomura, Northern Trust, Santander, Sumitomo Mitsui and Westpac. The BEI is convened by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL), which also provides the BEIs Secretariat. Funders is the Members

One or two success stories achieved

Monitoring and Impacts

Function of initiative Technical dialogue, Funding
Activity of initiative Knowledge production and innovation, Fundraising
Goals Through leading edge applied research and convening activities which connect to change in the real economy, the BEI focuses on decarbonising the global economy, protecting and restoring nature and supporting inclusive and resilient societies. The group works to ensure that capital acts for the long term, capital is priced according to the true cost of business activities and that financial structures better serve sustainable business.
Comments on indicators and goals Workstreams, past and present, include:

Financial Risk of Biodiversity Loss and Land Degradation (2020-2022), Client Engagement: reshaping the bank-client relationship to accelerate the transition to a net zero economy (2020-2021), The ‘Soft Commodities’ Compact (2014-2020), Bank 2030: Accelerating the transition to a low carbon economy (CISL, 2020), Trado: New technologies to fund fairer, more transparent supply chains (2019), Catalysing Fintech for Sustainability: Lessons from multi-sector innovation (2017), Kern Alexander Report - Banking and Sustainability: Time for Convergence (2015).

How will goals be achieved
Have you changed or strenghtened your goals
Progress towards the goals
How are you tracking progress of your initiative
Available reporting


Participants Number Names
Members 10  
Companies 0
Business organisations 0
Research and educational organisations 1
Non-governmental organisations 0
National states 0
Governmental actors 0
Regional / state / county actors 0
City / municipal actors 0
Intergovernmental organisations 0
Financial Institutions 9 ABN-AMRO (Netherlands),  Barclays (United Kingdom),  BNP Paribas (United K.),  Deutsche Bank (Germany),  HSBC (United K.),  Lloyds Banking Group (United Kingdom),  Natwest Group (United K.),  Santander (Spain),  Standard Chartered (United Kingdom)
Faith based organisations 0
Other members 0
Supporting partners 0
Number of members in the years
Have only national states as participators No


Transport Agriculture Forestry Business Financial institutions Buildings Industry Waste Cities and subnational governments Short Term Pollutants International maritime transport Energy Supply Fluorinated gases Energy efficiency Renewable energy Supply chain emission reductions Adaptation Other Resilience Innovation Energy Access and Efficiency Private Finance
No No No Yes Yes No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No No Yes
Last update: 8 March 2022 11:04:48

Not only have national states as participators