ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 48

> CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

Bankers Find Going
Green Makes Sense
BY COREY CARLISLE

IN JULY, 11 GLOBAL financial institutions including Citigroup, TD Bank and
Banco Santander announced a pilot project to address financial risks associated
with global warming. The project's goal is to implement recommendations for
financial reporting standards on issues related to the environment.
The largest banks-such as Bank of
America, which recently announced
plans to achieve carbon neutrality by
2020-are often viewed as corporate
leaders on climate change and
green issues. Community banks,
too, are demonstrating fiscal and
social responsibility by making
their operations and facilities as
environmentally friendly as possible.
For the employee-owned $3 billion
Alpine Bank, based in Glenwood
Springs, Colo., there is a shared belief
that their success is directly linked to
the health and quality of the natural
environment. The bank's "Green
Team" was formed back in 2005,
and has led many accomplishments
with environmental initiatives over
the years. The Green Team spurred
the bank's extensive environmental
management system, or EMS,
which provides the framework and
benchmark for reducing the bank's
environmental footprint.
Not long after the formation of EMS,
Alpine earned (and has maintained)
an ISO 14001 certification-a
universally recognized standard for
environmental management that helps
organizations minimize their effect on
the environment and compliance with
applicable laws and regulations. They
also began to offer an "environmental
loyalty debit card," which donates
10 cents for each transaction to help
48

ABA BANKING JOURNAL | NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2017

local groups restore, preserve and
protect ecosystems.
In 2014, ColoradoBiz magazine
named Alpine Bank among the
greenest organizations in the state.
And last year, the bank was inducted
into the International Green Industry
Hall of Fame. "This [honor] is a
result of our associates' dedication
to the Colorado environment and
unwavering commitment to the bank's
initiative to create measurable and
meaningful improvements in every
facet of our daily lives," said chairman
Bob Young in the bank's latest
environmental report.
When it comes to environment
sustainability, Holyoke, Mass.-based
PeoplesBank has established a
significant green track record by
building energy-efficient offices,
financing renewable energy projects
and fostering sustainability within
the bank and the community. The
$2 billion mutual has three branches
that are LEED-certified by the U.S.
Green Building Council, which means
those buildings meet benchmarks
associated with energy efficiency.
The bank also has electric vehicle
charging stations at some of its
locations, and an employee-formed
environmental committee sponsors
a farmers market, hosts an annual
environmental fair and runs a
carpooling program and electronics

recycling program for all staff
members and their families. To date,
the bank's e-recycling events have
collected more than 100,000 pounds
of materials.
PeoplesBank, winner of the ABA
Foundation's 2013 Community
Commitment Award for sustainable
banking, has also increased
its financing of wind, solar and
hydroelectric power projects, bringing
its total to approximately $126 million
worth of sustainable energy projects.
Banks are not only dedicated to
reducing their own environmental
footprint; they are also committed to
helping others reduce theirs. Many
banks are helping their customers
use new technologies that have
enabled online and mobile banking,
bill pay and e-statements to cut
down paper consumption. In Seattle,
$588 million Sound Community
Bank recently implemented a
recommendation from the bank's
sustainability task force to digitize
100 percent of its loan files. This
action helped the bank reduce
expenses by eliminating the storage
of three million pieces of paper.
Efforts to go green have been a win
for these banks, and will lead to a
more resilient and prosperous future
for our communities.
COREY CARLISLE is SVP for
community engagement at
ABA and executive director of
the ABA Foundation.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017

Chairman’s View
Upfront
Legal Briefs
Economic Outlook
Power Up Profile
Pitching In
Choices and Options Down on the Farm
Eager or Not, Every Board Needs an M&A Strategy
Adapting to Survive
More Than Just a Drink
Operations
Payments
Small Business Lending
Human Resources
ABA Compliance Center Inbox
From the States
Corporate Social Responsibility
Index of Advertisers
From the Vault
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Intro
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - ebelly1
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - ebelly2
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - cover1
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - cover2
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 3
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 4
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 5
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 6
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 7
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Chairman’s View
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 9
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Upfront
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 11
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 12
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 13
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 14
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 15
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Legal Briefs
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 17
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Economic Outlook
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Power Up Profile
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Pitching In
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 21
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 22
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 23
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 24
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 25
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Choices and Options Down on the Farm
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 27
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Eager or Not, Every Board Needs an M&A Strategy
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 29
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Adapting to Survive
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 31
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 32
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 33
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - More Than Just a Drink
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 35
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Operations
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 37
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Payments
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 39
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Small Business Lending
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 41
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Human Resources
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 43
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 44
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - ABA Compliance Center Inbox
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - From the States
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - 47
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Corporate Social Responsibility
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - Index of Advertisers
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - From the Vault
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - cover3
ABA Banking Journal - November/December 2017 - cover4
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