Strong ESG performance is core to delivering our purpose and strategy.

Delivering for all stakeholders, profitably.


Social sustainability report

This report provides an update on how we're building an inclusive society, including promoting financial inclusion, improving access to quality housing, enabling regional development and championing inclusion and diversity.

Download report



Environmental sustainability report

This report provides an update on how we're supporting the transition to a low carbon economy, including progress against our climate ambitions and targets, our first Group climate transition plan and associated TCFD disclosures.

Download report


ESG performance review

This supplementary report provides year-on-year data trends and management statements across a range of environmental, social and governance topics, including our approach to materiality assessment.  

Download report


Climate webinar – Wednesday 22 March

Hosted by Charlie Nunn, Group Chief Executive together with Janet Pope (Chief of Staff and Chief Sustainability Officer), Rebecca Heaton (Group Environmental Sustainability Director), Roselyne Renel (Chief Credit Officer), Scott Barton (Managing Director, Corporate & Institutional Coverage) and Andrew Asaam (Homes Director, Consumer Lending).

Download presentation

Download transcript

Access other ESG documents along with the Group’s codes, policies and sector statements.

ESG downloads

Our approach to ESG

Our purpose is to Help Britain Prosper. We do that by creating a more sustainable and inclusive future for people and businesses, shaping finance as a force for good. This forms the basis of our Group strategy announced in February 2022 to profitably deliver for all of our stakeholders.

Core to our purpose and strategy is our focus on building a more inclusive society and supporting the transition to a low carbon economy as this is where can make the biggest difference, whilst creating new avenues for growth. It is only by doing right by our customers, colleagues and communities that we can achieve higher, more sustainable returns for investors, and generate value for all our stakeholders.

As part of our strategy, our stakeholder outcomes have been embedded across our business priorities. Also, our Group balanced scorecard includes ESG performance measures to continue to drive progress towards our environmental sustainability and our diversity and inclusion ambitions.  

How we're Helping Britain Prosper

Building an inclusive society

To build a more inclusive society, we:

  • Improve access to quality housing
  • Promote financial inclusion and resilience
  • Enable regional development
  • Champion inclusion and diversity

We have set aspirations to increase the representation of women to 50% in senior roles and to increase the representation of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic colleagues in senior roles to 13%, and Black heritage representation in senior roles to at least 3% by 2025.

Supporting the transition to a low carbon economy

Climate change is one of the most urgent issues facing society today. We have an important role to play in supporting the transition to a low carbon economy. We have set ourselves an ambition to:

  • Reduce the carbon emissions we finance by >50% by 2030 on the path to net zero by 2050, or sooner
  • Achieve net zero in our own operations by 2030
  • Reduce the emissions from our suppliers by 50% by 2030 on the path to net zero by 2050, or sooner 

Our sustainable lending and investment targets

  • Motor

    £8 billion financing for EV and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles by 20242

    achieved in 2022 

    2. Includes new lending advances for Black Horse and operating leases for Lex Autolease (gross); includes cars and vans.

  • Green mortgage lending

    £10 billion green mortgage lending by 20243

    achieved in 2022 

    3. New mortgage lending on new and existing residential property that meets an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of B or higher. 4. Covers the period from January 2022 to September 2022.

  • Scottish Widows

    £20–£25 billion discretionary investment in climate-aware5 strategies by 2025

    achieved by the end of 2022 

    5. We are working with our strategic fund management partners BlackRock and Schroders to develop and refine a range of funds that have a bias towards investing in companies that are adapting their businesses to be less carbon-intensive and/or developing climate solutions. £17.5 billion invested over target lifetime, with £11.7bn invested in 2022.

Commercial Banking

£15 billion sustainable finance for corporate and institutional customers1 by 2024 

achieved in 2022 

1. Corporate and institutional customers (customers with a turnover >£100m). Includes clean growth finance initiative, Commercial Real Estate green lending, renewable energy financing, sustainability linked loans and green and social bond facilitation.

Our areas of focus

To deliver on our purpose, Helping Britain Prosper, we have identified four focus areas where we are best placed to provide significant positive change enabling us to create a more inclusive society and sustainable future.

Creating a more inclusive future

We aim to support the financial needs of all customer groups and ensure our products and services are inclusive and accessible by design. 

We also continue to create a fully inclusive organisation representative of modern-day Britain and help communities to become more inclusive too.

Improving access to quality housing

We are uniquely placed to support the UK housing market and help increase access to the benefits of home ownership – through shared ownership, supporting a quality rental and social housing sector, the building of housing that supports inclusive communities, and increasing the availability of specialist housing.

Enabling regional development

Regional inequality is one of the major challenges facing the UK. Leveraging our scale and unique position at the heart of communities, we aim to support regional development through housing and physical regeneration, encouraging inclusive growth and enabling a just transition to net zero.

Greening the built environment

Our objective is to help close the finance gap in greening the built environment in the commercial and residential UK market. Building on our financing to the social housing and commercial sector, we aim to broaden the finance and partnerships we make available to our mortgage customers, and our work on city-scale retrofit in the UK regions.

News and insight

The latest ESG updates and opinions from across the Group

Maria Nazarova-Doyle
Head of Responsible Investments and Stewardship, Scottish Widows
27 April 2023
4 min read

What is the impact of our pensions on the natural environment?

Maria Nazarova-Doyle, Head of Responsible Investments and Stewardship at Scottish Widows, explains the crucial role the UK’s nearly £3 trillion in pensions play in driving responsible, nature-focused investment.

Read Maria's article
Paul Gordon
Managing Director, Relationship Management
14 April 2023
6 min read

Where are SMEs on their journey to net zero?

Find out where SMEs are on their sustainability journeys, where they are looking for support and the help and resources we have to offer.

Read Paul's article

More related content

Corporate governance

We aim to comply with the principles of the Financial Reporting Council’s UK Corporate Governance Code. Read more about our corporate governance framework.

Corporate governance

ESG downloads

Here you can find our latest ESG reports and presentations. The Group’s key codes and policies, as well as sector statements, are also available in this section.

ESG downloads