DZ BANK Publishes Sustainability Report

Decarbonisation: targets set for more than half of the Group-wide portfolio

Within the framework of the Group-wide Sustainability Report, the DZ BANK Group today reported on its progress in achieving its ESG targets in the 2023 financial year. In this context, the cooperative banking group also published further targets for the environmental (E) area. Last year, DZ BANK AG already defined specific decarbonisation pathways for its business portfolio in five CO2-intensive sectors. These climate targets have now been extended to the Group, which also includes companies such as Bausparkasse Schwäbisch Hall and DZ HYP. In addition to the existing decarbonisation pathways for the energy, automotive, steel, cement and aviation sectors, the DZ BANK Group has set itself further climate targets in the shipping and real estate sectors. The goals relate to the Group's banking book, including its own investments. It is thus aligning its portfolio with the 1.5°C target of the Paris Climate Agreement and making an important contribution to achieving a net-zero future.

The DZ BANK Group wants to reduce the carbon intensity of its portfolio across all seven sectors by a total of five per cent by 2025 and 35 per cent by 2030. The sectors in question currently account for 55 per cent of the total loan volume of the financial services group. DZ BANK is performing particularly well in the energy sector. More than two thirds of the customer business already consists of direct financing of renewable energies. In 2023, the CO2 intensity of the portfolio also improved by 20 per cent, thanks to the further expansion of financing, and is now 76 per cent below the benchmark of the International Energy Agency.

At DZ BANK AG, the absolute credit volume for the financing of renewable energies increased to EUR 7.4 billion as at 31 December 2023 (31.12.2022: EUR 6.5 billion) and therefore significantly surpassed the target value of EUR 7.1 billion set for 2026. Union Investment has refined its targets and is now aiming for a 22 per cent share of sustainable investments in accordance with self-imposed ESG minimum requirements in relation to total assets under management by 2024 (previous year: 19.9 per cent). As at 31 December 2023, sustainable investments amounted to EUR 90.6 billion (31.12.2022: EUR 81.2 billion).

The DZ BANK Group is also making progress in reducing operational CO2 emissions. As part of its climate strategy, it has set itself the Group-wide goal of reducing emissions by 65 per cent by 2030 compared to 2009 and becoming climate-neutral by 2045 at the latest.

The Sustainability Report with a detailed outline of the decarbonisation pathways and all other targets is available on the Internet at www.dzbank.de/reports.

Irina Gaisdörfer