The dirty secret the big banks don't want you to know

published on 04 July 2023

Did you know your choice of bank could be producing more carbon than going vegan and stopping flying, combined?

The average UK consumer produces about 10 tonnes of carbon emissions through their lifestyle, which is, shockingly, about the same as the emissions funded via their financial institutions.[1][2]

The sad reality is that the world's biggest banks like HSBC and Barclays are funnelling billions of pounds into oil & gas projects every year.[3] research finds that if you were to hold £12,500 (the average UK household savings figure[4]) in a Barclays savings account, the resulting emissions would be 2.97 tonnes of carbon emissions (CO2e) per year, the equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by 135 average adult trees per year. This would also equate to charging over 350,000 smartphones[5], or flying from London to Rome and back fourteen times.[6]

Where we decide to keep our money is, arguably, the single most important choice we make when it comes to combating the climate crisis - that’s why built the world’s first money carbon calculator

By knowing the impact of your money, we can choose the companies we want to invest in today and decide which industries will thrive tomorrow.

The money carbon calculator is simple and completely free to use. 

It takes just 2 mins - all you have to do is enter the amount you have with your bank and they display your money carbon footprint. 

Not only do they calculate the footprint but they also show you what you can do about it. 

You’ll be presented with a selection of banks and pension providers that you can switch your money to reduce your carbon footprint. These FSCS-protected providers invest your money in low carbon activities to ensure your money aligns with your values.

And what’s more, choosing a greener bank and pension provider does not have to be at the expense of your returns. research suggests you don’t have to sacrifice returns by going green. In fact, between 2016- 2021, sustainable funds grew 13.9% more than standard pension funds.[7] So by switching to a green bank not only you can save the planet but also potentially grow your returns.

Give their free money carbon calculator a go - it might just be the most significant change you make to fight the climate crisis.

For further information visit



[1] Based on having £6,757 in a current account with Barclays and a pension of £42,651 held invested in the UK Equity Fund over 25 years. Note, in 2020, the average person in the United Kingdom (UK) had £6,757 saved (source: Analysis conducted by Note, The UK’s average pension pot stands at just £42,651 (source: Analysis conducted by

[2] Based on analysis by Accenture: The average UK household's spending generated 204 kg of CO2 emissions each week. This equates to 10,617 kg per household per year, which collectively amounts to an estimated 295 million tonnes of CO2 in 2020. Note, this does not include any investment, bank account or pension.

[3] Fossil Fuel Financing, From The World’s 60 Biggest Banks

[4] The average UK household has £12,500 saved 


[6] A flight to Rome produces 106KG of CO2 per person

[7] Based on 5-year performance of selected default pension funds (including but limited to Scottish Widows & Lloyds) compared against selected green funds, (including by not limited to Vanguard ESG Developed World & Pictet Clean Energy funds).

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