The United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative – UNEP FI was developed so that it would drive action to the global financial system, and align the economies with sustainable development. It develops the sustainable finance agenda in close cooperation with banks, investors and insurers from all over the globe.

It has developed a series of sustainability frameworks for the finance industry comprising of industry based principles, that are accompanied by a large number of guidance documents and publications each (UNEP FI, 2022):

  • Principles for Responsible Banking (PRB), launched in September 2019 and now signed by some 300 banks representing over 45% of global banking assets. Signatories are working to align their strategies and practice with the vision society has set out for its future in the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Climate Agreement, and relevant national and regional frameworks.
  • Principles for Sustainable Insurance (PSI), established 2012 by UNEP FI and today applied by one-quarter of the world’s insurers (25% of world premium). The PSI has developed industry guidance on integrating ESG risks in non-life and life & health insurance businesses.
  • Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), established in 2006 by UNEP FI and the UN Global Compact, and applied by half the world’s institutional investors (USD 83 trillion) by 2022. We now operate the Investment Leadership Programme together with the PRI, to catalyse trail-blazing cross-industry and investment initiatives to inform the wider responsible investment agenda.

The main areas UNEP FI works on are climate change, nature, pollution and circular economy, SDGs and impact and social and human rights

UNEP FI has a repositoty of a large number of publications relating to all elements of ESG and sustainability issues of the financial system.