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Advancing Environmental Sustainability

We are working across our value chain to help accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy

At Wells Fargo, we are working to embed environmental sustainability throughout our products, services, operations, and culture to drive efficiencies and responsible resource use while creating comfortable, safe, and healthy workplaces for our stakeholders. We believe that climate change continues to be one of the most urgent environmental and social issues of our time, and we are working across our value chain to help accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy and reduce the impacts of climate change on our business, communities, employees, and customers.

More information is available in our Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Report (PDF) and ESG Goals and Performance Data (PDF).

2020 environmental sustainability goals

Culture and business practices

  • Continue to purchase renewable electricity to meet 100% of our global operations needs
  • Transition to long-term agreements that fund new sources of green power by 2020
  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions 45% (from 2008 baseline)  
  • Reduce energy consumption 40% (from 2008 baseline) 
  • Achieve LEED® certification for 35% of buildings (by leased and owned square footage)
  • Reduce water consumption 65% (from 2008  baseline) 
  • Reduce total waste stream 50% (from 2010 baseline) 
  • Enhance sustainability of our supply chain
  • Achieve 250,000 employee commitments to improving sustainability
 

Products and services

  • Provide $200 billion in financing to sustainable businesses and projects (2018-2030) with 50 percent focused on clean technology and renewable energy transactions that directly support the transition to a low-carbon economy
  • Further integrate environmental and social risk management into our business processes
 

Philanthropy

  • Provide $65 million in philanthropic giving to critical environmental needs such as clean technology and environmental education (2016-2020)

Climate change

As one of the largest financial institutions and employers in the U.S., we strive to do our part to address climate change in alignment with our responsibility to our customers, employees, suppliers, investors, communities, and the environment we all share. We support the principles of the Paris Agreement, including its goal of limiting the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels by 2050. We’re building a robust, centralized approach that seeks to integrate near- and long-term climate-related risk and opportunity considerations into decision-making.

We’re leveraging our expertise and market position as we collaborate with our stakeholders on a number of initiatives to transition to a low-carbon, climate-resilient future, including:

  • Deploying capital to accelerate and scale the transition to a low-carbon economy
  • Strategic environmental and social risk management (ESRM) practices 
  • Transparent disclosure of our progress, including working to quantify and qualify the emissions intensity of our lending and investing portfolios
  • Enhancing energy and resource efficiency in our own physical assets to help ensure operational sustainability, adaptation, and resilience
  • Collaborating with leading organizations, peers, and other thought leaders to drive innovation and accelerate market-based solutions to the climate crisis

For more information, please visit our Climate Change Issue Brief (PDF).

Sustainable finance

In 2018, we announced that we would provide $200 billion in financing by 2030 to sustainable businesses and projects, with more than half focused on transactions that directly contribute to the Clean Trillion (e.g., renewable energy, green buildings, green bonds, alternative transportation, etc.), and the remainder on companies and projects focused on sustainable agriculture, conservation, recycling, resource management, and other environmentally-beneficial activities. In 2019, we provided approximately $26 billion in financing to sustainable businesses and projects to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy; bringing our cumulative total to approximately $49 billion of our $200 billion commitment. By the close of 2019, Wells Fargo’s tax equity projects represented 10.3% of all solar and wind generation capacity in the U.S. (January 1, 2006 – December 31, 2019).

As part of our commitment, we’ve also pledged sector-leading transparency in how we account for progress against the financial goal. For more, visit the sustainable finance reporting methodology (PDF).

Operational efficiency

To help provide healthy, safe, productive, and environmentally responsible spaces for our stakeholders, we approach operational efficiency through the principles of:

  • Environmental risk and compliance
  • Reducing our energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions
  • Resource efficiency
  • Deploying “green” building design into our corporate properties
  • Engaging employees in environmental activities and leveraging their skills