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PERSPECTIVES

Citi’s Approach to Climate Change and Net Zero

March 28, 2024
Jane Fraser, Chief Executive Officer, Citi

At Citi, we support our clients in navigating their biggest challenges and capturing opportunities for growth and progress. As the macroeconomic and geopolitical challenges continue to multiply and converge, we are seeing more governments and companies prioritize resiliency. This is especially true in our work on climate change and net zero, where we are working side by side with our clients to help them achieve their goals, whilst remaining highly mindful of near-term energy needs and related economic impacts.  

From our work with clients in nearly 160 markets, we know that the journey toward net zero will occur at different speeds in every industry and country. We support our clients in financing their transition to low-carbon business models and innovating clean technologies, whilst also supporting clients who supply ample and affordable energy to meet the world’s current and future needs. These activities are not mutually exclusive and must be addressed simultaneously.

None of this work is easy and sometimes we need to make difficult decisions. We often speak of the energy transition as if we could trade one technology for another, but what we are experiencing today is more of an energy evolution — a shift over time toward a low-emission energy mix. This shift will not be linear and will include a series of cumulative leaps and tipping points over the next few decades. Our global success will depend on maintaining energy security, increasing resiliency and sustaining economic opportunity around the world.

The evolution of our energy system hinges on many dimensions, including thoughtful public policy that incentivizes investment in clean energy technologies and critical upgrades to our electric grids, transmission systems and permitting processes to catalyze deployment of more projects. Access to stronger and more reliable data also remains an ongoing challenge, and obtaining such data allows us to analyze climate risk impacts, measure results and identify transition opportunities. Given these needs, every aspect of society — governments, corporations, nonprofits and communities — will be part of achieving progress on this journey.

At Citi, this energy evolution is an important area of opportunity for our business and our clients. Energy is a capital-intensive part of our global infrastructure and we expect to see significant finance and advisory work across all critical economic sectors as they adapt.

In our 2023 Citi Climate Report, we provide an update on the progress we are making toward our net zero commitment, how we are managing environmental risk, and detail the impact of our climate strategy over the past year. This work includes:

  • Lending our expertise and balance sheet to support some of the largest renewables IPOs of the year, the largest-ever global hydrogen IPO and Europe’s first battery recycling gigafactory
  • Ranking as the #1 U.S. lead underwriter in 2023 for global green, social, sustainability and sustainability-linked bonds
  • Participating in the development of the Sustainable Aluminum Finance Framework to help lenders measure emissions and decarbonization of a hard-to-abate sector
  • Supporting innovation in sustainable finance, including a solar securitization program to broaden access to clean energy in Kenya for our client Sun King, and the World Bank’s emissions-reduction linked bond, which taps the voluntary carbon markets to help reduce emissions and finance school water purifiers in Vietnam

Amidst the challenges of addressing climate change, opportunities for growth and progress abound. By supporting an orderly and inclusive shift to a low-carbon economy, we can confront one of the most complex challenges of our time while delivering value for all our stakeholders.

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Jane Fraser
Chief Executive Officer, Citi
 
 

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