As a regional bank, it is important for us to take part in community development and contribute to sustainable development.
Our work with sustainability
Sustainability is a key part of our business. High ethical standards and credible business in partnership with customers, suppliers, government, and the community that we are a part of, will characterize everything we undertake. This is regulated through the framework of Norwegian laws and regulations, as well as our own guidelines, strategies, and policies.
In 2018, we are working with a new strategy for sustainability based on an essential analysis to the Oslo Bourse.
Our work on sustainability
SpareBank1 Nord-Norge is an actor that can contribute to the realization of the UN’s 17 sustainability goals. Our approach to sustainability is holistic in the Group's operations and includes all three areas of sustainability; social, economic and environmental.
We have signed up to the UN Principles for Responsible Banking
We want to contribute to the global sustainability efforts of the banking industry. That is why we have signed up to the “Principles for Responsible Banking” under the auspices of the United Nations Environment Programme Finance (UNEP FI). More than 160 banks from around the world have signed up to the principles, which were launched on 22 September 2019. The goal is for banks around the world to take a leading role in achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals and meeting the commitments made under the Paris Agreement.
How we work
We are continually working to reduce the amount of resources required and become a more environmentally efficient organisation, through setting requirements for the group, suppliers, and our partners.
Our objective is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from our operations with 40% from base year 2016 to 2026, and at least 5% annually. Among other things we are working towards having parts of the group paperless by 2020. For us as a finance group we have a responsibility to help achieve Norway's objective for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and thereby helping to prevent global warming of more than 1.5 degrees.
We are Eco-lighthouse certified and follow the commitments inherent in the certification scheme. The Eco-lighthouse is one of Norway's most widely used certificates for companies that want to document environmental efforts and corporate social responsibility. An Eco-lighthouse certification helps the business to create an environmentally friendly operation and provide a clear and documented environmental profile. The Eco-lighthouse entails systematic work on environmental initiatives. The intention is that all employees of the bank are to have a conscious relationship with consumption, travel, waste management and energy consumption in general.
Read more about the scheme at miljofyrtarn.no.
Energy and climate accounting
Annually we work on an energy and climate account that documents the 1. group's consumption, amount of recycling, and energy use. The account follows the international standards of “The Greenhouse Gas Protocol” and ISO 14064-1. The climate account for 2019 can be read here (pdf).
SpareBank 1 North-Norway respects fundamental human rights. This also includes all conventions ratified through Norwegian law, such as the United Nations human rights conventions, the ILO’s core conventions and the UN’s environmental and corruption conventions. This includes the fundamental rights that all people have and are regulated by national and international law including in particular the right to fair and good working conditions, equal pay for equal work, the abolition of all forms of discrimination, the rights of indigenous peoples, and the prohibition of child labour. These are the requirements that apply to all our activities in SpareBank 1 North-Norway, our suppliers and when we give credit.
Our market area lies in a part of the Sámi area. We are committed to having a presence in the Sámi local communities and being a good bank connection for Sami Business and Sámi retail customers. Our customers can get advice in Northern Sami and we have a Sami telephone bank available for our customers. The Board's annual report is translated into Northern Sami.
All our operations are conducted in Norway, and are subject to Norwegian law and international conventions ratified by Norwegian laws. We take into account labour rights and fundamental social needs. The requirement for labour rights also applies to our suppliers.
We promote equality amongst all our employees, regardless of their gender, orientation, language, ethnicity, national origin, colour, religion, and creed. The group has employees from different nations and many are multilingual. In our part of the country, it has been especially important to have employees who have mastered Sámi and Russian.
Our ethical guidelines applies to all our employees and is a foundation for the group's business operations and strategic objectives. We have set up an ethics council which continuously updates the groups ethical guidelines.
We value privacy and customer rights. Read more about privacy and confidentiality.
Our investment activities follow Norwegian laws and regulations to ensure that the group does not contribute to the infringement of people and labour rights, corruption, serious environmental damage, or other actions that may be perceived to be widely unethical. Our direct exposure as an investor is mainly aimed at the Norwegian and Nordic markets, and largely towards the bond market.
We will be a committed and responsible corporate citizen, with sustainable management. This is expected to create value over time. Requirements for responsible management and responsible investments apply to all asset classes. Responsible management on direct investments means that the risk associated with the environment, social conditions/human rights and corporate governance (ESG risk = Environmental, Social and Governance) as it is defined in the reports to the Government Pension Fund Global.
No direct investment is made in companies which are involved in the production of tobacco, pornography, antipersonnel mines or cluster munitions, or in companies that carry out development and production of core components of weapons of mass destruction as a significant part of their business. Or in companies contributing to abusive or systematic violations of human and labour rights, such as forced labour, serious environmental damage or
Requirements for suppliers of funds
SpareBank 1 North-Norway offers a number of funds for our customers. To be included in the product range that we distribute the fund supplier must meet
our minimum requirements within:
- social responsibility
- openness and good corporate governance
Below you will find some of the fund supplier's investment profiles:
Our procurement policy sets requirements for the following core areas:
- Human rights
- Working Conditions
- Honest business
The suppliers shall at a minimum satisfy and abide by local, national, and international laws and regulations in SpareBank 1 North-Norway's business region for the provision of credit approval and for which this is limited to North- Norway/Norway, and we do not finance projects or businesses abroad. In the credit rating of our customers, there is always a risk assessment. We do not finance businesses that contradict our ethical guidelines, that is, businesses that are perceived to be in violation of the general rule of law or are deemed offensive in any other way. Environmentally related risks shall be assessed on a par with other risk conditions. Central to this assessment, is the customer's attitude to be able to comply with environmental requirements that are or may be imposed.
Credit is not given to companies involved in the production of tobacco, pornography, antipersonnel mines or clusters munitions, or companies developing and producing core components of weapons of mass destruction. Furthermore, credit is not given to companies contributing to abusive or systematic violations of human and labour rights, such as forced labour, serious environmental damage or corruption that will conflict with our ethical guidelines.
SpareBank 1 North-Norway does not fund power generation from coal, coal extraction, nor electricity production based on fossil fuels and oil and gas extraction. G principles, including provisions on conditions such as wages, working hours and HSE (Health, Safety and Environment), as well as the environment and anti-corruption. The standard appendix on social responsibility which is the basis for our procurement applies across the entire SpareBank 1 Alliance.
Economic crime, including the laundering of dividends, undermines the legal economy of any society. Our employees should have the necessary knowledge to recognise customer relationships and transactions that can aim to exploit financial systems for money laundering and the financing of terror. We comply with legislative requirements and honour the measures which aim to combat financial crime and the funding of terror. This entails making good risk assessments, as well as having good knowledge about customers and the purpose of the customer relationship.
SpareBank 1 North-Norway neither operates, provides services to or gives advice for the intent of the withholding of tax.
Global Report Initiative
We report our performance related to sustainability in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI). The reporting is done anually as part of the anually report.
In 2017 Savings Bank 1 North-Norway signed the UN Global Compact. This is the world's largest initiative for the corporate social responsibility. The principles of the Global Compact will be used as the foundation for our strategy on social responsibility and it is anchored in the group's other strategies.
Member of Klimapartner
We are a member of Klimapartner (Climate Partner). This is a joint initiative between 16 companies in Northern Norway, determined to put climate concerns on the agenda for all businesses in the region.
How do we work with Sustainability?