HSBC climate change adverts banned by UK regulators

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Image Source: The Drum

Due to two HSBC adverts being “misleading” regarding the company’s efforts to combat climate change, the UK’s advertising regulator has banned them.

According to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), HSBC could no longer run ads promoting its plans to reduce harmful emissions.

According to the watchdog, the posters “omitted critical information” regarding HSBC’s operations.

It represents the ASA’s initial response to “greenwashing” by a bank.

According to an HSBC representative, the bank must explain to the public how it contributes to the low-carbon transition to engage its clients and increase public awareness.

By labeling something as eco-friendly, green, or sustainable when it is not, a practice known as “greenwashing,” consumers believe they are doing their part to protect the environment.

The advertisements were seen in Bristol and London last October in the months leading up to the highly anticipated United Nations COP26 climate change summit.

The advertisements described HSBC’s initiatives to plant trees and assist its clients in achieving “net zero” emissions. By reducing emissions and attempting to achieve net zero, greenhouse gases are not added to those already present in the atmosphere.

The ASA claimed that the advertisements left crucial details about HSBC’s role in carbon dioxide and greenhouse gas emissions.

The regulator continued that customers wouldn’t anticipate HSBC to make unqualified claims about its environmentally beneficial operations.

HSBC is financing businesses that contribute significantly to carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions.

The actions taken by HSBC to combat climate change have recently come under scrutiny.

Stiff criticisms

Campaigners charged in February that HSBC and other banking giants were pouring billions into new oil and gas extraction.

ShareAction, a London-based organization, urged banks to require green plans from fossil fuel companies before funding them. It reported that since 24 central banks joined the Net Zero Banking Alliance, $33 billion in new oil and gas project funding have been approved.

According to an HSBC representative, the bank was dedicated to helping its customers facilitate a transition toward a low-carbon economy.

Meanwhile, a top HSBC executive in May stirred much debate when he claimed that government figures had exaggerated the risks of climate change.

“There’s always some nut job warning me about the end of the world,” said Stuart Kirk, the asset management division of the bank’s global head of responsible investing.

His position required him to consider how investments might affect social, political, and environmental challenges. He was stationed in London.

HSBC executive resigns over climate speech

A top HSBC executive has resigned after accusing officials and central bankers of misrepresenting the financial implications of climate change.

There’s always some nut job informing me about the end of the world, claimed Stuart Kirk, the bank’s global head of ethical investing.

Mr. Kirk’s job involves analyzing how investments affect social, environmental, and governance issues.

In his letter, he claimed that during his 27-year career in finance, media, and consultancy, even though he had never failed to put his customers and readers first.

He emphasized the dangers of floods in his speech and stated that he needed to spend his time “looking at something that’s going to happen in 20 or 30 years.”

Read Also: US Senate passes climate change tax package.