Ceres has released the first-ever analysis of the climate change practices of the 40 largest world banks. “Corporate Governance and Climate Change: The Banking Sector” ranked banks based on a 14-point checklist that included board of director oversight, management performance, public disclosure, emissions accounting and strategic planning. It found that a growing number of European, U.S. and Japanese banks are setting internal global warming targets, increasing research and elevating lending and financing for clean energy projects. Others, meanwhile, are doing relatively little or nothing. Goldman Sachs topped the investment bank category list while Bear Stearns came in last, and HSBC Holdings topped the diversified banks list with the Bank of China brining up the bottom. You can see more of the highest and lowest ranking institutions here.
Khosla Ventures (as in Vinod Khosla, founder of Sun Microsystems) is investing in EcoMotors, a auto company with the goal of producing a 100 mpg diesel engine vehicle by 2011. EcoMotors has been around for several decades; it developed the first high speed diesel engines for all Volkswagens and Audis, as well as the first 6-cylinder diesels for Volvo, among other accomplishments. EcoMotors is optimistic about the market potential of the car because of several significant factors coming together: stronger U.S. fuel efficiency standards, stronger diesel emissions standards, rising demand for efficient cars in China and India, and high oil prices.
The Planning and Conservation League named the utility PG&E (Pacific Gas and Electric) its “Environmental Business of the Year.” The group called out PG&E’s increased renewable energy use in its electricity mix and its conservation efforts. The League is a California coalition of organizations that lobby on behalf of environmental issues. Their associate organizational members such as The Trust for Public Land and the Golden Gate Audubon Society.