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Nigeria: FirstBank collaborates with Proparco on climate initiatives

FirstBank Nigeria Limited has partnered with the development finance institution Proparco to integrate climate initiatives into its business operations and strategic planning.

In a statement released on Friday, the bank announced that this partnership aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and position FirstBank as a leading African Climate Bank.

Nigeria has pledged to cut its GHG emissions by 20 percent by 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2060.

As a signatory to the Africa Business Leaders’ Climate Statement, which was released in 2022 at COP 27 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, by the Africa Business Leaders Coalition, FirstBank reaffirmed its commitment to these environmental goals.

FirstBank also disclosed that it is implementing a system to measure its operational emissions across all its branches and offices.

“This includes calculating data on electricity use, diesel use, water consumption, waste management approach, fuel consumption, business travel, etc. to determine the bank’s emission baseline and innovative opportunities for operational emissions reduction,” it noted.

Speaking on the development, the Managing Director of Valoris, a consulting firm from Austria, Dr Martin Steindl, said, “Among our various engagements with financial institutions on climate mainstreaming, FirstBank is the only organization that has been able to provide data both on the assets’ location of their portfolio and head offices of their clients. I am impressed with the progress we have collectively achieved.”

Reinforcing the bank’s commitment to mainstreaming climate initiatives, the acting Chief Risk Officer of FirstBank, Patrick Akhidenor, remarked, “FirstBank is intentional about redefining its climate footprint. We are identifying opportunities in climate finance to improve our portfolio and reduce the carbon emissions associated with our processes and operations.

“The bank is executing a financed emissions calculation mechanism as well as creating climate finance opportunities, such as renewable energy and energy efficiency products for our customers.”

As part of a two-day partnership strategy workshop session facilitated by IPC and Valoris, consultants from Austria engaged by Proparco reviewed FirstBank’s climate journey across all areas of implementation to determine progress and empower strategic departments across the Bank’s operations.

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