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Climate activists take Swiss finance regulators to task

Environmental group Greenpeace has filed a formal protest against Switzerland’s financial regulators over their perceived failure to impose climate policy rules.

The group called on the financial market watchdog body FINMA, the National Bank as well as the Occupational Pension Supervisory Commission to ensure that banks, insurance companies and pension funds stop financing projects worldwide which are harmful to the climate.

These institutions contribute to greenhouse gas emissions of the Swiss finance industry and neglect their duty to protect citizens from dangerous interference with the climate system, according to a statement published by Greenpeace.

“The CO2 output financed by the Swiss finance sector are massive and the current investment policy have helped increase global temperatures by up to 6°Celsius,” the NGO said on Wednesday.

It claims that an overwhelming majority of the Swiss population supports efforts for a more climate-friendly banking and insurance industry.

Last month, Greenpeace criticised the government for a report on sustainable financing, saying the government had missed a golden opportunity to set enforceable standards. It said Switzerland was lagging behind other countries in this respect.