Cara Schulze


What does sustainable finance mean to you

Cara Schulze: Sustainable finance, and in particular the steering of capital toward sustainable financial investments, is without doubt the central lever for the transformation process toward a sustainable economy. If we want to achieve the Paris climate targets, we need huge investments. As financial intermediaries, banks naturally have a key role to play here.

What is the key to a successful further development of the sustainable finance movement?

Schulze: For the sustainable finance market to continue to grow at the required rate, market participants need even more trust, especially in its instruments. Trust grows through uniform standards, unambiguous assessment criteria and transparency.

Therefore, what we need is a uniform framework for assessing what is truly “green.” In this regard, we hope to see significant progress through taxonomy and the introduction of comparable reporting standards by the CSRD.

On the banking side, the main challenge is to obtain the necessary ESG data to create transparency and calculate the impact of our actions. Real data are the basis for measuring impact in order to achieve our net zero ambition.

What role does LBBW play here?

Schulze: We have positioned ourselves very clearly: We want to help ensure that the transformation succeeds and be at the forefront of change among German banks. As a universal bank with deep roots in the SME sector, we are ideally placed to support our customers in this transformation. We proactively accept our public mandate as a companion to this transformation. In its key role, LBBW offers the appropriate financing products and supports customers with expert advice on their path to Net Zero.

“Sustainability and sustainable transformation is the most important societal challenge of our time. We are facing this task together ….”

What is your personal goal?

Schulze: In these challenging times with their many regulatory upheavals, I, as Head of Sustainability, am primarily concerned with supporting our customers with innovative products on their way to Net Zero. We also want to and will align our business in line with the Paris climate goals and manage it accordingly. We are setting the course for this as part of a Group-wide project.

I am also convinced that we as a financial industry should approach the challenges facing us even more strongly as a joint effort. We all face the same tasks and can learn from each other. That is why it is important to me that we actively participate in initiatives such as the cluster, or the NZBAG. If we fill these platforms with life, society, our customers and we the members will benefit. Sustainability and sustainable transformation is the most important societal challenge of our time. We are facing this task together ….

„In order to stop climate change – the effects of which have long since been noticeable – enormous investments are needed. This is why we are embracing the idea of private capital also being invested according to the principles of sustainability. The Cluster aims at further promoting this movement.”

Hessian Minister of Economy, Tarek Al-Wazir