Climate change and environmental issues
Our commitment to action on climate change
Our ambition to become a net-zero, climate resilient bank
Climate change is a significant issue which is already impacting our business, customers and community. We seek to play our part in addressing these impacts, through our ambition to become a net-zero, climate resilient bank.
In July 2022, we joined the Net-Zero Banking Alliance (NZBA) and continued our work on reducing our operational and financed emissions and aligning our lending portfolios with net-zero financed emissions by 2050, consistent with a pathway to limit global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels by 2100.
We were a founding member of the UN's Environment Programme Finance Initiative, signed the Equator Principles in 2003 and were the first Australian bank to release a Climate Change Position Statement in 2008.
Our climate strategy is structured along three action areas that focus on our own operations, supporting customers and advocating for positive change.
We aim to deliver on our strategy through the actions and initiatives set out in our . Unless specified, we aim to implement the actions in our Action Plan by 30 September 2025. Other targets refer to Westpac Group’s financial year, e.g. 2030 targets to be achieved by 30 September 2030.
- A science-based transition to a net-zero emissions economy is required by 2050
- Addressing climate change should reduce risks and create opportunities for our business and customers
- Transition should be technology-driven, inclusive and safeguard our natural environment
- Collective action is vital
- Our approach should be transparent with thorough disclosures
Our action areas
Our action areas
Key targets and objectives¹
Net-zero, climate resilient operations
Supporting customers’ transition to net-zero and to build their climate resilience
Collaborate for impact on initiatives towards net-zero and climate resilience
Contribute to government and industry initiatives and engage on matters of climate policy.
² The challenges of developing local renewable energy infrastructure and the lack of renewable energy certificate markets in some of the international markets Westpac operates in are a recognised risk to this target. We are monitoring this risk and actively seeking to solve for these challenges as we work towards meeting our commitment.
³ May include hybrid or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) to serve customers in locations where electric vehicle charging infrastructure is not widely available. Supply chain challenges and roll-out of charging infrastructure at a national scale are risks to this target at the time of setting. This target will be reviewed in 2025 to consider the status of these risks.
⁴ A pathway to net-zero by mid-century, or sooner, including CO₂ emissions reaching net-zero at the latest by 2050, consistent with a maximum temperature rise of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels by 2100.
In line with our NZBA commitment, we have set 2030 financed emissions targets.
Upstream oil and gas1
Target: 23% reduction of scope 1, 2 and 3 absolute financed emissions by 2030 from a 2021 baseline.
¹ Includes exploration, extraction and drilling companies, all activities of integrated oil and gas companies (IOCs), tolling and stand-alone refineries and LNG producers. Does not include downstream retail and distribution, pipeline infrastructure, storage and transport, nor trading entities.
We continue to integrate and operationalise our targets into our processes and lending decisions.
The information on this page contains ‘forward-looking statements’ and statements of expectation reflecting Westpac’s current views on future events. They are subject to change without notice and certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions which are, in many instances, beyond its control.
For more information on our sector targets, including Scope, sector boundary, target definitions and baselines, please see our Sustainability Performance Reports.
- Released our Climate Report, with an updated
- Continued working with customers to support their transition to a net-zero economy, as we shift our financed emissions to become net-zero by 2050, consistent with a 1.5°C pathway
- Released our and set new 2030 Sustainable Finance Targets for lending and bond facilitation activities
- Largest bank lender to greenfield renewable energy projects in Australia over the past five years2
- The equivalent of 100% of our Australian operational electricity demand now sourced from renewables3
- Reduced scope 1 and 2 emissions4 by 52% and our scope 3 upstream emissions4,5 by 4% for the year (as at June 2023)
- Maintained certification6 for direct operations in Australia since 2012 and New Zealand since 2019
- Launched a carbon footprint tracker in the Westpac app for Australian retail customers to better understand their emissions
- Participated in the Australian Banking Association and the Australian Sustainable Finance Institute working groups to improve industry practices in climate risk, climate disclosures, financed emissions, and the sustainable finance taxonomy
- Continued collaboration with the Australian Industry Energy Transitions Initiative, including their February 2023 report which outlines potential pathways for heavy industry emissions reduction
- Sponsored the Australian Farm Institute’s ESG Goals and Target Setting Conference 2023, and jointly hosted a roundtable discussion with Agrifutures Australia on emissions reduction solutions.
For more information, refer to our . Regular updates on our progress can be found in our Performance Reports.
1 As at 30 September 2023.
2 Based on IJGlobal and Westpac Research Data for the period 1 October 2018 to 30 September 2023.
3 On track to achieve 100% renewables outcome for our direct operations. 95% of this supply is expected to be sourced from within the markets the electricity is consumed. We will continue to identify opportunities to lift local sourcing to 100%, to include for our Fiji and PNG businesses, as required to achieve 100% under the RE100/CDP Standard.
4 2021 baselines for scope 1, 2 and scope 3 upstream emissions targets adjusted for COVID-19 pandemic and other impacts. Refer to our 2023 Sustainability Index and Datasheet.
5 Refer to our 2023 Sustainability Index and Datasheet for details of included Scope 3 upstream emissions sources.
6 Certification is obtained for Westpac’s Australian and New Zealand operations (excludes financed emissions) under the Australian Government’s Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard for Organisations and the New Zealand Toitū net carbonzero certification respectively. Further information can be found on the Sustainability Performance Reports page on our website.
Our operational targets
- Reduce water consumption in Australian workplaces by 15% by 2025 relative to a 2020 baseline
- Divert 80% of waste from landfill at Australian commercial sites by 2025 and 85% by 2030 relative to a 2020 baseline.
Our defines our ambition to become a nature positive bank – that is, a bank that supports nature positive outcomes. As at November 2023, for us, becoming a nature positive bank means developing our understanding of nature-related risks and opportunities for our business and customers, and seeking to develop processes to have regard to nature positive outcomes through our business and to support customers. Currently, our ambition and this Position Statement apply to our direct operations and lending to institutional and commercial customers. We expect this definition to evolve as our understanding matures.