Launching the ESG2 initiative
As HSBC commits itself to a sustainable future with its “Business Plan for the Planet,” Niccolo Polli, CEO of HSBC Luxembourg discusses his support for the “ESG Financial Square” initiative as one of the ways the bank, its customers and the Grand-Duchy can contribute to their climate change goals.
What motivated you to sponsor the “ESG Financial Square” initiative?
During lockdown I would often take long bike rides through Luxembourg with my kids. It was incredible to see how nature flourished the minute humanity took a collective pause. I realized then that, working together, we can stem climate change and I felt a responsibility both as a parent and a local CEO to “build back greener” and not simply revert to previous habits by default. I also realised it would de difficult to do once the impetus of covid is removed.That is when the idea of ESG Square was born: to try and keep this collective momentum going. Hence the analogy of the Village Square and encouraging everyone to join in: to talk about the issues openly, to share commitments and solutions, to debate the concerns and all in a positive spirit of mitigating climate change together.
What can people expect from this initiative?
There is so much happening in the world of sustainable finance and ESG that it’s not always easy to keep up and understand what really matters. ESG Square provides a one-stop guide to the world of ESG and sustainability in Luxembourg. It looks at the key players and provides relevant content to help identify who is doing what and how these actions fit into the overall rich Luxembourg ESG ecosystem. ESG Square will communicate which commitments have been made by whom; what new initiatives and events are on the horizon; real-world solutions that people or companies can consider and the creation of thought-provoking analysis and opinion pieces to educate and inform about the risks and opportunities emerging.
What is HSBC Luxembourg committing to?
HSBC Group’s “Business Plan for the Planet” sets-out our ambition to become a net-zero bank by 2030 with a net-zero portfolio by 2050. In Luxembourg we have committed to reduce our own carbon footprint (on some metrics by over 80%), help employees manage theirs and direct more of our resources to help clients transition to lower carbon solutions. As a large bank we have an important role to play and need to integrate ESG considerations into all facets of our business. My key messages are: that being sustainable is good business and that together we can succeed. I hope many of your readers will join us in the ESG Square and share their stories and their solutions.
Facts & Figures
Birthday: 2 April
Nationality: Italian and British
Languages: English, Italian, French, Spanish
Hobbies: Tennis, football, biking, snow-boarding… sports in general!
Cities: Rome, London, San Francisco, Cape Town, Sydney
Places: Italy, Caribbean, Alps
Books: Hamlet (albeit not a book!)
Restaurants: too many!
Artists: Salvador Dali
Other Positions: Executive Director of the Board of HSBC Private Bank Luxembourg, Board Member Stanford Alumni (Luxembourg), Trustee of Young African Leadership Programme (UK), Founder Benga Riverside International School (Mozambique)