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Managing our environmental footprint

  • Our Group Environment Policy creates a framework that helps us understand and manage the way our business directly and indirectly impacts the environment
  • It also helps identify environmental risks and opportunities in our business practices

  • CommBank’s comprehensive environmental management system (EMS) is based on the international standard ISO 14001
  • The EMS helps to identify, prioritise and address the environmental impacts of our business and improve the environmental performance of our Australian property and fleet activities
  • The EMS guides:
    • How we allocate resources
    • Our environmental responsibilities
    • How we assess our environmental practices, procedures and processes
    • A process of continual improvement

  • In 2009, we set a target to reduce the carbon emissions from our Australian operations by 20 per cent of the 2008-09 levels by June 2013
  • This represents 34,550 tonnes of carbon
  • By January 2013 we had achieved our goal, and by June 2013 we had surpassed our target by an additional 10,658 t CO2-e
  • We achieved this through a range of energy-efficiency initiatives in our branches, offices and fleet vehicles, including:
    • Installing more efficient lighting and air conditioning throughout our retail and commercial properties
    • Switching from six-cylinder to four-cylinder fleet vehicles
    • Moving our offices from a larger number of inefficient buildings into a smaller number of more environmentally efficient premises
  • Carbon emissions data is available in our Sustainability Report

  • We have been actively measuring and voluntarily disclosing our energy use and greenhouse emissions since 2001
  • We are subject to the Federal Government’s Energy Efficiency Opportunity (EEO) Act, which helps us identify cost-effective energy savings initiatives
  • We annually report these savings, as well our progress in implementing our overall EEO program across our fleet and property portfolios
  • We are part of the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting (NGER) Scheme and report annually to comply with the legislation
  • Since 2008 we have voluntarily reported our carbon emissions to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), an independent not-for-profit organisation that seeks climate-related information from the world’s largest companies on behalf of institutional investors
  • The Commonwealth Property Office Fund and Direct Property Investment Fund are managed under Colonial First State Global Asset Management, and report carbon emissions separately under the Carbon Disclosure Project

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  • CommBank has been a senior investor in clean/renewable energy projects since 2004, with clients in sectors including wind, solar, biomass and hydroelectric
  • Some of the companies and renewable energy projects we have recently been working with include:
    • Collgar Wind Farm – provides around half of the wind generation capacity in the South West Interconnected System (SWIS) of WA
    • Pacific Hydro – a portfolio of brownfield and greenfield development sites of wind and hydro assets in Australia, Brazil and Chile
    • Uterne solar farm – first Australian bank to successfully finance a utility scale solar PV power plant, producing approximately 2300 megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity per year
  • Our Carbon Solutions team leverages CommBank’s core trading, financing and distribution capabilities to provide a range of tailored financing and hedging solutions to assist clients in the management of their carbon risks

  • We are using sustainable green-leasing practices and partner with our lessor organisations to improve our environmental standards in water, waste, energy and fit-out materials
  • We’re targeting a minimum of 5 Star Green Star and 5 Star National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS) standards for new commercial buildings and major refurbishments 
  • We are targeting a minimum 5 Star NABERS rating for all commercial leases we renew
  • To ensure our commercial office space ratings keep improving, relevant staff members have gained NABERS assessor accreditation
  • Between 2004 and 2012 we moved over 19,000 employees from 19 buildings across Sydney into three purpose-built campuses
  • The final building, Commonwealth Bank Place (CBP), housing more than 6,000 of our people, is the Group’s first 6 Star Green Star commercial office space
  • CBP uses an activity-based working (ABW) design, as we recognise that our people work more effectively when they have flexibility
  • With ABW, our people can choose different types of work settings, depending on what they need to do during the day, using mobile technology, unassigned desks and collaborative working spaces
  • ABW has been so successful that we’re now using the model for two new major CommBank developments in Perth and Auckland
  • CommBank also participates in Earth Hour each year, turning off non-essential lighting in our offices and branches across the country

Related information

Read about our sustainability initiatives, focus areas and performance in the 2012-2013 financial year. 

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We have been measuring and voluntarily reporting our energy use and greenhouse emissions since 2001.

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Highlighting the measures we are taking to ensure sustainability is part of everything we do.

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A responsible approach to the way we provide financial products and services is essential for delivering excellent service to our 14 million customers.

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