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Corporate Responsibility Program

Available in: русский, Français, العربية, Español

The World Bank Group is committed to actively integrating sustainability into our work with clients and strives to continually manage our corporate environmental and social impact. The Corporate Responsibility (CR) Program is a catalytic unit charged with identifying and spurring key corporate sustainability initiatives. It focuses on three main areas of work:


·         Reducing our environmental footprint and raising awareness on social issues across the Bank by identifying and carrying out key initiatives for greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction; promoting efficiencies in water, waste, and energy; and educating staff on social and environmental issues.

·         Promoting greater transparency for the organization’s performance at the corporate and operational levels through forums such as the Carbon Disclosure Project; the Sustainable United Nations Initiative; and the Bank’s Sustainability Review website that includes an annually-updated Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Index.

·         Supporting the World Bank Treasury in its strategic effort to broaden its investor base by reaching out to Socially Responsible Investors and developing innovative financial products and services.




Creating a Sustainability Management System


The World Bank began the process of creating a Sustainability Management System (SMS) to manage our sustainability impact in a systematic manner, minimize associated resource use, improve efficiency and reduce associated risks. Based on internationally-recognized standards, the system will provide a way to manage key impacts for the way we operate on a day-to-day basis.


Measuring, Reducing and Offsetting


The World Bank has committed to reduce the GHG emissions from our daily operations through a comprehensive program to measure and manage the sources of emissions. To reduce these emissions, we have installed energy efficient chillers in our Main Complex facility to replace old, inefficient chillers. This change alone is expected to conserve nearly 3 million kWh per year. To maintain carbon neutrality, we purchase offsets for corporate emissions that we cannot reduce. In FY 2014, we maintained carbon neutrality with the purchase of certified emissions reductions from a combination of projects including a biogas and efficient cookstove project in Nepal, a wind-power project in China and a landfill methane capture project in Brazil.


Innovative Financial Products


The World Bank Treasury, working with the CR Program, has developed innovative products that act as catalysts for private-sector climate financing. World Bank Green Bonds raise funds from fixed-income investors through the global capital markets to support our lending for eligible climate change mitigation or adaptation projects. Since the inaugural issue in 2008, the Bank has issued over USD 4.5 billion in Green Bonds through 60 transactions in 17 currencies. More information is available at


Promoting Greater Transparency and Accountability


Reporting to stakeholders on triple-bottom-line performance (environmental, social and economic) is essential for recognition as an organization with sustainable business practices. The 2013 Sustainability Review has been developed in accordance to “core” Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Guidelines, the international standard for sustainability reporting. Our corporate GHG emissions are also reported through the Climate Neutral UN Initiative as well as the Carbon Disclosure Project, a UK-based NGO which maintains the largest global database of corporate GHG inventory information.


Sustainable Facilities


The Bank’s Manila, Philippines and Juba, South Sudan offices recently earned the United States Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Certification. The Juba office, the first LEED certified building in the nascent country of South Sudan, used a design approach focused on passive cooling and energy conservation and has been featured on the USGBC website. Offices were built around the flowering inner garden courtyard which provides systematic use of daylight and ventilation. Despite Juba’s 40C heat in the summer, no central air is needed in the building.


The Manila office, which earned LEED Gold for Commercial Interiors, utilized an open floor plan to maximize daylight, increase air circulation and improve air quality. All printer and copier rooms were enclosed to minimize impact from particulates, and occupancy sensors were installed throughout the office space.


Staff Engagement


In 2013, the World Bank Group increased its Bike Friendly Business rating from the League of American Bicyclists from Bronze to Silver – signaling that it has strengthened its program in encouraging staff to commute by bicycle to work through improving facilities, additional outreach and education sessions, and soliciting feedback for program improvements.




Greenhouse Gas Inventory: The World Bank annual GHG inventory for FY 13 was around 178,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, 60 percent of which (106,951 tons) originated from air travel.


Reporting: WB’s corporate FY 12 GHG inventory was reported to the Carbon Disclosure Project and to the Climate Neutral United Nations program. Additionally, we reported on the 150 indicators of the GRI, responded to investor rating agency inquiries and produced a web-based Sustainability Report FY 13 Sustainability Review.


The Sustainable Office Initiative continued to gain momentum with additional units being assessed. Four Sustainable Office Ambassador certification courses were offered, training more than 90 staff since June 2012.


For more information, please visit



Geetanjali Chopra, (202) 473-0243,


Updated March 2014




Last updated: 2014-04-02

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