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CIBC becomes the First Canadian Bank to join RMI's Center for Climate-Aligned Finance

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Partnership focused on furthering sustainable finance options for corporate clients

TORONTO, Feb. 18, 2021 /CNW/ - CIBC (TSX: CM) NYSE: CM) today announced it has joined RMI's Center for Climate-Aligned Finance (the Center) as a Strategic Partner and the first Canadian bank to announce its partnership in the Center's efforts to develop the agreements and tools necessary to align financial decision-making with the long-term decarbonization of the real economy.

CIBC Logo (CNW Group/CIBC)
CIBC Logo (CNW Group/CIBC)

CIBC joins US financial institutions Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, and Bank of America as key financial-sector partners of the Center. The Center serves as an "engine room" for the financial sector to work with corporate clients to identify practical solutions through deep partnerships with industry and policymakers to facilitate a transition in the global economy to net-zero emissions by mid-century. Achieving meaningful targets for carbon reduction requires the support of financial institutions, and the commitment of innovative companies in high-emitting sectors focused on the long term and committed to progress towards a more sustainable future. The collective impact of these stakeholders will be essential to achieving long term goals.

"We are committed to developing market-based solutions that address critical environmental challenges, and our collaboration with the Center for Climate-Aligned Finance is an additional resource to further our momentum and expertise in this important area," said Harry Culham, Group Head, Capital Markets, CIBC. "As a purpose-led bank, we have a leadership role to play in advising our corporate clients as they transition to a lower-carbon economy, and we're committed to working with all stakeholders to help our clients achieve these ambitions."

The Center, launched by RMI in July 2020, works to enable financial institutions, corporates, and experts to overcome practical obstacles to climate alignment. Collaborating closely with its Partners, the Center works across industries to shape sectoral climate alignment initiatives for high-emitting industries and contributes to the development of global solutions, practices, and frameworks as finance increasingly plays an important role in decarbonization of the global economy and driving a just transition.

"We are delighted to welcome CIBC as a Strategic Partner as we look to support the bank's sustainable finance efforts across Canada, the US and beyond," said Paul Bodnar, chief strategy officer at RMI and the Center's chair. "This represents a major advance for climate alignment in North America. Only collective action by financial institutions, in concert with their clients, can drive progress fast enough towards a net-zero emissions global economy."

CIBC is committed to the development and implementation of new and innovative solutions for clients as they further their commitment to sustainability. In December 2020, CIBC received a score of A- from the CDP (formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project), demonstrating the bank's progress in environmental performance and reporting. As part of CIBC's commitment to support environmental sustainability initiatives, the bank's actions include:

  • In 2020, issued a USD $500 million, five-year green bond to help finance new and existing green projects, assets, and businesses that mitigate the risks and effects of climate change. These include renewable energy, green buildings, clean transportation, natural resource conservation, biodiversity conservation, energy efficiency, and pollution prevention and control.

  • In 2019, announced a target of mobilizing $150 billion in environmental and sustainable finance activities by 2027.

  • In 2019, issued the climate-related disclosure report "Building a Sustainable Future," aligned with the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures.

  • In 2019, set new targets to source 100 per cent of its electricity from renewable sources and become carbon neutral by 2024.

More on CIBC's environmental initiatives and performance can be found on CIBC's Environmental Sustainability website and in the bank's CDP Climate Change 2020 questionnaire response.

About CIBC

CIBC is a leading North American financial institution with 10 million personal banking, business, public sector and institutional clients. Across Personal and Business Banking, Commercial Banking and Wealth Management, and Capital Markets businesses, CIBC offers a full range of advice, solutions and services through its leading digital banking network, and locations across Canada with offices in the United States and around the world. Ongoing news releases and more information about CIBC can be found at www.cibc.com/en/about-cibc/media-centre.html.

About the Center

The Center for Climate-Aligned Finance (the Center) was established by RMI in July 2020 to help shape the financial industry's role in facilitating the transition to a low-carbon, sustainable economy and society. Building on RMI's nearly 40 years of experience developing market-based solutions to accelerating the energy transition, the Center serve as an "engine room" for the financial sector to partner with corporate clients to identify practical solutions through deep partnerships with industry, civil society and policymakers to facilitate a transition in the global economy to net-zero emissions by mid-century.

About RMI

RMI is an independent nonprofit founded in 1982 that transforms global energy systems through market-driven solutions to align with a 1.5°C future and secure a clean, prosperous, zero-carbon future for all. We work in the world's most critical geographies and engage businesses, policymakers, communities, and NGOs to identify and scale energy system interventions that will cut greenhouse gas emissions at least 50 percent by 2030. RMI has offices in Basalt and Boulder, Colorado; New York City; Oakland, California; Washington, D.C.; and Beijing.

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