Saving the Planet with Sustainable Card Programmes: How Retail Banks Can Help Fight Climate Change

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16 August 2021


Climate change is real and retail banks have an important role to play to help tackle the issue. Card issuers can contribute by moving to more sustainable raw materials for their payment cards, rethinking the card’s lifecycle, and educating the cardholders and nudging them into action. By doing so, the leaders in sustainable card programmes are beginning to shape another language around payments, one that is focused on sustainability rather than consumption.

Readers of this report will learn about:

  • Why climate change is now a Board-level topic for banks and what they are doing about it.
  • Why physical cards still matter and how banks are using them to differentiate.
  • The environmental impact of cards.
  • How to make the cards programmes more sustainable and the industry players that can help.
  • Pacesetters - the leading issuers embarking on sustainable card programmes - and why the adoption of such programmes is growing rapidly.
  • How to develop a sustainable cards strategy for your institution.

Few need convincing that climate change is real, and action is needed from all of us. The pacesetters discussed in this report are showing the path forward for retail banks and other card issuers. Now is the time for all financial institutions to join them. After all, not many change initiatives can promise not just happier and more engaged customers and employees, but also a chance to help save the planet!

Licensed financial institutions mentioned in this report:

Ålandsbanken, American Express, Bank of the West, BBVA, BNP Paribas, Chase, Credit Agricole, Emirates NBD, HSBC, Länsförsäkringar Bank, Nationwide Building Society, NatWest, Nordea, Revolut, Santander, Standard Chartered, Starling Bank, Triodos Bank, US Bank

Fintechs and technology firms mentioned in this report:

Apple, CoGo, CPI Card Group, Doconomy, FIS, Fiserv, Giesecke + Devrient, IDEMIA, Klarna, Mastercard, Nets, Novus, Thales, TietoEvry, Tomorrow, Treecard, UnifiMoney, Venmo, Visa