Associated Bank Releases 2021 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report
Associated Banc-Corp (Associated Bank) has released its 2021 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) report. This annual report highlights the company’s progress on ESG priorities and features programs designed to improve the economic health of its markets; promote diversity, equity and inclusion; deliver a safe, productive and engaging workplace and culture; and preserve the environment. The report also features the Company’s ESG approach and governance practices.
“Associated Bank’s ESG efforts are foundational to everything we do,” said Andy Harmening, president and chief executive officer at Associated Bank. “We are intentional with our priorities and strive to deliver increasing, long-term value to all stakeholders – the customers we serve, our colleagues and the communities where we live and work, and shareholders who place their trust in our performance.”
In the past year, Associated Bank evolved its ESG reporting to align with both the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD). The report includes disclosures aligned with the SASB and TCFD indices and the EEO-1 Demographics Index. The Company also established new corporate position statements on human rights, environmental and social lending, and environmental risk management. This corresponds with Associated Bank’s commitment of setting strategic and achievable ESG objectives that help guide the Company’s work and improve performance.
“While environmental, social and governance programming isn’t anything new for Associated Bank, we are now focused on providing a more expansive view of our efforts,” said Randy Erickson, general counsel and ESG committee chair at Associated. “We are proud of our accomplishments and appreciate the opportunity to share this comprehensive view of our progress.”
The report covers the period from January 1, 2021, through December 31, 2021, except where noted. Among the many focus areas this report covers, key highlights from the past year include:
- Approximately $1.2 billion in residential loans to support low- to moderate-income (LMI) and minority homeownership. This represents 6,278 residential mortgages helping families obtain homes.
- $465 million in community development loans and investments to create affordable housing options, provide community services and promote community development.
- $324 million in loans to small businesses.
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion:
- More than 99% of colleagues participate in DE&I training.
- 43% of colleagues participate in Colleague Resource Groups.
- 63% middle and executive management diversity and 36% Board of Directors diversity as defined by gender, race or ethnicity.
- Adopted Human Rights Statement focusing on providing a safe, diverse, equitable and inclusive environment for all stakeholders.
- Further formalized Board-level oversight of ESG.
- Formally established senior management level ESG Committee.
- Established Environmental Sustainability Council to identify, implement and effectuate priorities for environmental sustainability activities.
- Established Environmental Risk Management Policy and Program Statement focused on Environmental Risk Management; Climate Change, Carbon Emissions and Natural Resources; and Environmental and Social Lending.
- Signed on to be a Supporter of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) in September 2021.
- Joined the Value Reporting Foundation, formerly known as the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB).
Source: Associated Banc-Corp