December 30, 2008
Wells Fargo Exceeds Environmental Financing Goals
by Robert Kropp
Bank's progress report details $3 billion in financing for green business opportunities over a
In 2005, Wells Fargo announced a 10-point
environmental commitment, which included a promise of annual updates to communicate the bank's
"achievements in meeting these commitments." Foremost among the points was a commitment to "provide
over $1 billion in lending, investments, and other financial commitments over the next five years
to environmentally beneficial business opportunities."
Since announcing its original $1 billion commitment, Wells Fargo has provided more than $3
billion in financing for green business opportunities, exceeding its goal two years ahead of plan.
Foremost among recipients of the bank's financing are building projects that are designed to earn
the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)
certification, which have received more than $2 billion.
LEED is a third-party
certification program and the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and
operation of high performance green buildings.
Wells Fargo has invested more than $250
million in seven states to support over 80 commercial-scale solar photovoltaic projects producing
36 megawatts of power, as well as a 64 megawatt utility-scale concentrating solar power plant. In
addition, the bank has committed an additional $450 million of tax-equity investments to 12
utility-scale wind projects in seven states.
The projects are expected to generate enough
clean, renewable energy to power about 475,000 households.
Wells Fargo has committed more
than $500 million to companies working in the renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainable
agriculture and forestry, resource management and recycling, and green building product sectors.
Through its Green Equity Equivalent Investment (Green EQ2) program, Wells Fargo has
provided more than $50 million in financing to water and energy efficient affordable housing
projects and revolving loan funds that support environmentally friendly community development.