Western Europe country category winners 2023: Best bank for ESG in the UK: Barclays
Barclays has made visible progress across the board in environmental, social and governance, advising on large sustainability financings, enhancing its sustainable mortgages and offering more support to green startups.
The banks in each market that have excelled across a range of core banking activities over the past 12 months.
The UK bank provided over £54.3 billion in social, environmental and sustainability-linked financing in 2022. It also reduced its financed emissions against a 2020 baseline by 32% – a figure that has already exceeded its 2025 target.
With a comprehensive sustainable finance framework in place, Barclays has participated in key sustainable deals in the UK this year, including the £4.5 billion tap of the government’s second green gilt, and large corporate green financings for issuers including Wessex Water, Motability Operations and Vivid Housing.
Barclays pioneered green mortgages the UK in 2018 and has now piloted a scheme offering residential mortgage customers funds to make energy-efficient home improvements. It has expanded this offering to include buy-to-let properties. These initiatives helped the bank deliver £1.6 billion of financing for green homes in 2022.
The Barclays Sustainable Impact Capital initiative, which focuses on investing in environmental startups, deployed over £45 million in 2022, providing funding for disruptive companies such as Naked Energy, MOF Technologies, ECOncrete Tech and Zedify.
The bank's push to support sustainability startups also included signing a five-year partnership with Cambridge-based venture builder Carbon13 to assist 100 companies.