Sustainability initiatives in the financial sector

The issue of green Pfandbriefe and the associated financing of green, energy-efficient real estate is one of the ways in which banks can make their contribution to a sustainable society.
In addition, today more than ever, environmental, social and governance (ESG) aspects are taken into account at all levels of a bank.

The German Pfandbrief banks are active in various initiatives and also commit themselves to sustainable, responsible action through membership in renowned associations.
The vdp itself is a member of Aktionsbündnis Klimaschutz and supports the institutions in their initiatives wherever possible.

The following is an excerpt, each with a brief description of the best-known initiatives in which vdp member banks are involved and which they support:

Climate Bonds Initiative

The Climate Bonds Initiative is an investor-focused non-profit initiative that promotes investment in a low-carbon economy. It promotes market information and promotion, provides policy models and government advice, market data and analysis, and manages an international standard and certification system for best practices in green bond issuance.

German Sustainability Code

The German Sustainability Code is a cross-sector transparency standard for the reporting of corporate sustainability performance and was developed by the German Council for Sustainable Development in 2011.

Energy Efficient Mortgages Initiative

EEMI, comprising 47 leading financial institutions, 17 national, European and international authorities and stakeholders from relevant markets, is a market-oriented initiative aimed at creating an integrated "ecosystem" of energy-efficient mortgages with significant transformation potential.

Green Bond Principles

The Green Bond Principles (GBP) promote integrity in the Green Bond market through guidelines on transparency, disclosure and reporting. With their focus on Use of Proceeds, the GBP support issuers who wish to make their business activities more environmentally sustainable.

Principles for Responsible Banking

The Principles for Responsible Banking were developed by the Financial Initiative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNEP FI) in collaboration with 30 banks and are intended to serve as a framework for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and the goals of the Paris Climate Change Accord. They were presented at the UN General Assembly in New York on 22 September 2019.

Principles for Responsible Investing

The Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI) were created by an international investor network that has drawn up six Principles for Responsible Investment and examines the effects of sustainability. The aim is to understand the impact of sustainability on investors and to help signatories incorporate the issues into their investment decision-making processes.

Sustainable Development Goals

The 17 goals of the United Nations for sustainable development ("17 SDGs" of the "Agenda 2030") came into force on 1 January 2016 and serve to secure sustainable development at the economic, social and ecological levels.


UNEP FI is a global partnership between the United Nations Environment Programme and the private financial sector. The aim of UNEP FI is to promote the integration of environmental aspects into the services of the financial sector and at the same time include them in accounting, reporting and reporting.

UN Global Compact

The UN Global Compact of the United Nations is a voluntary pact between companies and the UN to make globalization more social and ecological. Participants are obliged to stand up for human rights, fair working conditions, environmental protection and the fight against corruption.


The VfU is a network of sustainable finance professionals (banks, insurance companies, investment companies and corresponding associations) with the aim of promoting and disseminating sustainable finance. VfU offers a platform where participants can acquire, exchange, generate and deepen their knowledge and know-how.