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Danske Bank joins the Net-Zero Banking Alliance

By joining this initiative, Danske Bank is committing to aligning its lending and investment portfolios towards net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 or sooner – and setting interim reduction targets along the way. Danske Bank will do this in close cooperation with its customers by providing financial advice and solutions that support the green transition.

Following its commitment to create sustainable progress and support the green transition, Danske Bank is today joining the Net-Zero Banking Alliance (NZBA), an industry-led, UN-convened alliance of banks worldwide, created ahead of the UN Climate Conference in Glasgow later this year.

Members of the alliance commit to aligning the greenhouse gas emissions of their lending and investment portfolios with net-zero by 2050 or sooner, in line with the climate goals of the Paris Agreement.

Our aim is to support our customers and society in transitioning to a low-carbon future. Today we are taking an important step by joining this initiative.

Carsten Egeriis

CEO, Danske Bank



Advancing climate action
“It’s clear that urgent action is needed on climate change – and that we have even less time to act than we previously thought. Our aim is to support our customers and society in transitioning to a low-carbon future. Today we are taking an important step by joining this initiative, and we look forward to engaging with our customers to support them in taking climate action”, says Carsten Egeriis, CEO of Danske Bank.

Building on existing efforts
Danske Bank’s decision to join the Net-Zero Banking Alliance builds on several years’ work with the climate agenda and enabling customers’ sustainability efforts, including development of green financial products and climate scenario analyses.

Already in February 2020, Danske Bank committed to aligning its corporate lending portfolio to the climate goals of the Paris Agreement, and it has set a target to provide 300 billion DKK in sustainable financing by the end of 2023.

Moreover, on the investment side, Danske Bank has already joined the Net-Zero Asset Owner Alliance and Net-Zero Asset Managers Initiative.

Today’s announcement thus underlines Danske Bank’s commitment to supporting the green transition and accelerates efforts that are already underway.




Important industry-wide collaboration

Representing almost a quarter of global banking assets, with over 60 Members from 30 countries, this alliance is a critical step in the mobilisation of the financial sector for climate action. It recognises the key role of banks in supporting the transition of the economy to net-zero emissions.

By becoming a member of the Net-Zero Banking Alliance, Danske Bank commits to:
  • Aligning the emissions of its lending and investment portfolios with net-zero by 2050 or sooner
  • Setting interim 2030 targets for all carbon-intensive sectors where it has significant financial exposures
  • Reporting annually on its progress


Banks have a vital role in supporting the transition to a low-carbon society.

Maria Simonson

Head of Group Sustainability, Danske Bank



“By joining the Net-Zero Banking Alliance, Danske Bank confirms its commitment to decarbonising our portfolios in line with the climate goals of the Paris Agreement, and we expect to set 2030 climate targets for our lending and investment portfolios within a year", says Maria Simonson, Head of Group Sustainability, Danske Bank and continues:

"Banks have a vital role in supporting the transition to a low-carbon society, and for this to be effective it is important with transparent and coherent frameworks in which to operate – and industry-wide collaboration is essential for establishing these”. 

Climate analysis underway
Danske Bank is currently analysing its portfolios to get an overview of its financed emissions in different sectors.

Danske Bank published in June its first progress report with climate scenario analysis and emissions mapping of the utilities sector, commercial real estate in Denmark and the shipping sector. Understanding the emissions impact of its financial activities is a key step that will allow Danske Bank to set interim 2030 targets that focus on the sectors where it finances the most emissions.

What does “net-zero” mean?

“Net-zero” for the financial sector refers to reducing emissions from financed activities (e.g. from fossil fuel financing) in line with science-based scenarios across all material sectors in the lending and investment portfolios.

This may, as a last option when all other avenues have been explored, include carbon removals to balance residual emissions where there are limited technologically or financially viable alternatives to eliminate emissions. 

The Net-Zero Banking Alliance

  • The NZBA is convened by the United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative and is the banking element of the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero, chaired by Mark Carney, the UN Special Envoy on Climate Action and Finance ahead of the COP 26 climate conference.

  • Combining near-term action with accountability, this commitment requires banks to set an intermediate target for 2030 or sooner, using robust, science-based guidelines.

  • The Alliance will reinforce, accelerate and support the implementation of decarbonisation strategies, providing an internationally coherent framework and guidelines in which to operate, supported by peer-learning from pioneering banks.

    It recognises the vital role of banks in supporting the global transition of the real economy to net-zero emissions.