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Great Southern Bank becomes carbon neutral

Carbon Neutral Certification

Great Southern Bank today announced it has become carbon neutral following independent certification of its 7,500 tonne carbon offsetting program.

The bank achieved the certification from Climate Active for its offsetting partnerships with an entirely Aboriginal-owned, not for profit business undertaking traditional fire management to reduce emissions and clean, renewable energy projects in India that support rural communities. Achieving carbon neutrality builds on the bank’s long standing, successful engagement with the broader community through its financial inclusion program and partnerships with groups like the Australian Red Cross.

“As Australia’s largest customer owned bank, our customers and the wider community expect us to operate sustainably and to help address climate change,” said Paul Lewis, CEO of Great Southern Bank.

“Our very purpose as an organisation – to help Australians to own their own home – is endangered by climate change.”

The offsetting project in Arnhem Land involves reinstating traditional burning practices that demonstrate a significant reduction in carbon emissions along with social, cultural, environmental and economic benefits for Indigenous landowners.

Controlled burns are conducted early in the dry season, reducing fuel on the ground and establishing natural firebreaks that prevent bigger and uncontrolled wildfires later in the season.

“Our climate change strategy is evolving, and in the coming months and years we are committed to reducing our environmental impacts and cutting our carbon footprint,” said Mr Lewis.

“Ultimately, it is work we must do if we are to live up to our purpose in helping all Australians own their own home in a world impacted by a changing climate.”

The announcement follows a series of strategic moves from Great Southern Bank designed to make the organisation fit for the challenges it faces in the years and decades to come. This includes rebranding as a bank, investing and updating its infrastructure to ensure better customer outcomes, and consistently running competitive home loan products.

About Great Southern Bank

For over 75 years, we’ve been putting our customers first, and today we look after the financial and insurance needs of over 560,000 Australians. We just changed our name from CUA to Great Southern Bank but we’re still the same customer-owned bank focused on helping Australians own their own homes with clever products that match the many ways we now live and work. Something we think is pretty neat. After all, we too believe in the great Australian dream and we’ll do our best to help you achieve it.

Media contact:

Michael O’Toole

Corporate Communications Manager

Mobile: 0428 051 754
Email: michael.otoole@gsb.com.au