The BNDES and the Green Protocol

The Green Protocol contains intentions signed by public financial institutions and by the Ministry of the Environment in 1995 and revised in 2008[1].   It is aimed at defining the initial, multiplying and exemplary banking policies and practices in terms of socio-environmental responsibility and in harmony with sustainable development.

The protocol signatories commit to financing development with sustainability by means of lines of credit and programs that foster the population’s standards of living and environmental protection. Participating banks also recognize that they can fulfill a fundamental role in advising private investments aimed at environmental preservation and the continuous improvement of society’s well-being.

The BNDES is making a constant effort to improve its performance and follow the Green Protocol by means of various instruments and practices that guide its efforts, both within the scope of its core activity to finance development, as well as in its internal administrative-organizational activities. The fulfillment of commitments defined in the five “principles” of the protocol that, consequently develop into specific guidelines, are made evident in this report.

For each principle, the following accomplishments in 2011 are noteworthy:

  1. Finance development with sustainability, by means of lines of credit and programs that foster the population’s standards of living, the sustainable use of the natural resources and environmental protection.
    • The development of financing lines and programs with attractive rates for social and environmental investments associated with financial support projects (see Corporate Social Investment).
  2. Consider the socio-environmental impacts and costs in the management of assets (its own or belonging to third parties) and in client and investment project risk analyses, based on the National Environmental Policy.
  3. Promote the sustainable consumption of natural resources and materials derived from them, in internal processes.
    • Besides the traditional initiatives (rationing the consumption of electric power, water and office supplies; the use of recycled printing and writing paper; collection and separation of waste to be recycled), in December of 2011, the BNDES Sustainable Purchases Policy was approved. With this initiative (more detailed in the “Eco-efficiency and Sustainable Purchases” chapter), the Bank assumes an important role in inducing the dissemination of sustainable operational practices, reaching not only the chain of product and service suppliers, but also public agencies and society.
  4. Continually inform, create awareness and engage the interested parties in the institution’s sustainability policies and practices.
    • In 2011, the BNDES developed the socio-environmental analysis course and initiation lectures for new employees (see the People Management), making the workforce aware and engaged in the policies and practices already defined by the Bank. Throughout the year, there was also expressive mobilization of different technical teams in discussions regarding improvements and new work fronts for the BNDES and the promotion of sustainability. This gave rise to studies (see the Studies and Research), internal procedure revisions, as well as the creation of indicators (see Strategy and The BNDES in Numbers).
  5. Promote standardization of procedures, as well as cooperation and integration of efforts between signatory organizations when implementing these principles.
    • The BNDES accompanied and participated in meetings with the Ministry of the Environment, the Central Bank and the Brazilian Federation of Banks (Febraban), discussing and contributing to the definition and operationalization of more sustainable criteria and practices.

1. In 1995, the BNDES lead the federal public banks (besides the BNDES, the Caixa Econômica Federal, Bank of Brazil, Bank of the Amazon and Northeaster Bank of Brazil also participated) in the signing of the Green Protocol. More recently, in August 2008, the BNDES, the Ministry of the Environment and federal public banks signed the Protocol of Intentions for Socio-environmental Responsibility, an updated revision of the 1995 Green Protocol.