Supporting society for the long term
We’re passionate about empowering and educating our customers, while offering products and services that help them lead more sustainable lives.
We were the first UK bank to join Future-Fit Foundation’s Development Council and, in partnership with them, have launched a benchmarking tool – The Sustainable Business Coach - for businesses to measure their ESG progress against the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. The tool, which can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, is free to access for all UK businesses.
We’ve also jointly launched Sustainability-Linked loans which reduce the cost of finance for businesses who help the economy transition to a more sustainable model. Virgin Money is the first bank in Europe to use a science-based methodology to appraise eligibility.
We’ve worked with carbon consultancy firm, Carbon Metrics, who have conducted on-farm carbon audits and co-authored our net zero report, which provides background to climate change specifically relating to agriculture, and suggestions on how farmers can adapt and plan their own journey towards net zero. We have launched our £200m Agri E Fund, which can be used for investment in emission reducing initiatives and will also encourage the uptake of carbon audits, which are becoming increasingly important in agriculture’s supply chains.
We have continued to offer our range of greener mortgages on new build and shared ownership properties, and actively participated in sector collaboration to identify affordable and accessible solutions for customers to alleviate the pressure of rising energy costs. Through our partnership with Carbon Neutral Britain, our greener mortgage product funds environmental projects around the world and offsets the equivalent of 12 months of emissions from one UK home for every mortgage which completes.
We’re focused on reducing the negative impacts of all that we do and, as members of the Net Zero Banking Alliance (NZBA), have committed to reaching net zero by 2050.
- Greener mortgage product offering – 5 tonnes carbon offset for each new mortgage completed.
- First in Europe to launch Sustainability-Linked loans using an objective science-based methodology.
- Sustainable Business Coach mobile app now part of annual credit review process for borrowing over £2.5m.
- Launched £200m Agri E Fund - designed to support the environmental and efficiency needs of our agriculture customers.
- £224m in energy and environment financing to progress the UK’s energy transition, including a wide range of projects.
At least halving our carbon emissions across everything we finance.
Short > Medium Term Targets
50% increase every year in value of new greener mortgage lending.
42% of mortgage portfolio EPC C+ rated by FY25
Increase our ESG Score by 10% per annum from FY22 baseline (Baseline: 2022 ESG score 52%)
Portfolio ESG score is the average score received by Virgin Money customers through Sustainable Business Coach assessment. Responses are self-certified.
5% of business loan book comprised of Sustainability Changemakers by FY22, and 10% by FY27.
Increase Energy and Environment lending to £500m balance by FY25
>50% of mortgage portfolio EPC C+ rated
Mortgages - Greening your Home
We know we have an important role to play in helping our mortgage customers reduce the carbon footprint of their homes.
With 15% of UK carbon emissions coming from heating our homes, we developed information and guides on ‘greening homes’ which we are making available to first-time buyers through our new Home Buying Coach app.Home Buying Coach app
Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financial (PCAF)
As members of PCAf, we are working with other UK banks to develop and implement a harmonised approach to assess and disclose the GHG emissions associated with our loans.
Energy & environment lending in Business
Across our Business portfolio, we lend over £220m to customers classified as energy & environment - with an ambition to provide £500m of borrowing by FY25. This is predominantly provided through our specialist Energy & Environment team, but also includes lending in our Agriculture and Strategic Finance team.
Our lending to carbon-intensive sectors is relatively low, and by publishing our Sensitive Sectors Policy statement, we are being clear who we will lend to and how we view potential clients who are operating in sensitive sectors.Sensitive Sector Policy