Zoom in on Net Zero - with NatWest's Solange Chamberlain and Simon Watson

Michael Holder

Top figures from the leading banking group - formerly RBS - join BusinessGreen deputy editor Michael Holder to discuss NatWest's ambition to become a 'climate positive' bank by 2025

Major changes have been underway at NatWest in 2020. At the start of the year parent company the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) announced a rebrand to bring the entire banking group under its NatWest brand umbrella, at the same time as unveilng a suite of industry-leading climate goals.

Firstly, the bank has set its sights on becoming 'climate positive' across its own operations by 2025, and to "at least" halve the climate impacts of its financial activities by 2030. In order to get there NatWest - which aims to become net zero in its own operations this year - has said it will stop all lending and underwriting for oil and gas firms unless they produce credible Paris Agreement-aligned plans by the end of 2021, and to phase out all coal investments entirely within the next decade. On top of these targets, the bank has said it will funnel an additional £20bn funding and financing into the green economy, in areas such as renewables, green buildings, the circular economy and sustainabel transport between now and 2022.

To discuss the firm's ambitious targets, the growing divestment movement, what being a climate positive bank means in practice, NatWest's chief commercial officer for commercial banking, Solange Chamberlain, and Simon Watson, managing director for retail banking at RBS, both joined BusinessGreen deputy editor Michael Holder for a chat ahead of the world's first Net Zero Festival, for which NatWest is a partner. 

More on Investment


'This is a natural gas market crisis': Why energy markets could be set for three more years of turmoil

The global economy could face many more years of energy market turbulence if governments do not take steps to turbocharge their clean energy and technology investments, the IEA has warned

Cecilia Keating
clock 17 January 2022 • 7 min read
The inclusion of gas and nuclear in the taxonomy has been widely criticised | Credit: iStock

'No remaining carbon budget': Investors urge EU to ban fossil gas from green finance rulebook

Investors with €50tr assets under management group call on EU to revisit plan to sanction spending on some gas power plants under its new green finance rulebook

Cecilia Keating
clock 17 January 2022 • 3 min read
Done right, new natural capital markets offer big opportunities for businesses and farmers

Done right, new natural capital markets offer big opportunities for businesses and farmers

by James Elliott, senior policy adviser, Green Alliance

James Elliott, Green Alliance
clock 17 January 2022 • 5 min read