Barclays, Credit Agricole make new multi-billion commitments to green bonds

Major banking institutions back green investments.

Barclays and Crédit Agricole have made further large commitments to the green bond investment space.

The UK bank, confirming it has reached its target of investing over £1bn (€1.42bn) in green bonds, made a commitment to invest a further £1bn. “This represents one of the largest Green Bond investment commitments by any institution globally,” it said.

“As the Green Bond market matures this instrument presents an increasingly powerful proposition and one that has the potential to push green projects including renewables forwards at pace,” said Barclays’ Group Finance Director Tushar Morzaria. The bank was pleased to be an “early adopter” in a fast-growing and exciting area.

Meanwhile, France’s Crédit Agricole said it would commit to investing €2bn in “high quality green bonds, social bonds or sustainability bonds” by the end of 2017 as part of its “liquid asset buffer”Green bonds, it says, are fixed income securities allocated to environmental projects or activities explicitly including an environmental objective while social bonds are earmarked to social-related activities. “Sustainability bonds combine both features,” it adds.

The bank says it has arranged more than €22bn of green bonds and was the sole European bank to co-draft the Green Bond Principles,

The bank was a founding member of the Equator Principles and was among the first banks worldwide to make the decision to no longer finance coal mining projects or companies specialized in this sector, or coal fired power plants located in high revenue countries, it added.

In 2014 the green bonds market totalled $36.6bn and current issuance for 2015 stands at $29.7bn.