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About the Amazon region

Mapa do Brasil

Area

The Amazon region makes up 59% of the country, but its share of national GDP is only 8%, according to experts.

CINDRA
Comunidade

Cultural diversity

The region is home to more than 180 ethnicities and 150 different languages.

(Global Forest Watch 2019)
População Mundial

Population

There are more than 27 million inhabitants in the Amazon, representing 13% of the Brazilian population.

(IBGE)
Floresta

Biodiversity

Approximately 15% of all terrestrial biodiversity on the planet is found in the Amazon ecosystem, whose biomass stores almost 200 billion metric tons of carbon.

SUDAM

The Plano Amazônia plan

Launched in June of 2020, with two other large private banks, Bradesco and Santander, the Plano Amazônia plan promotes the sustainable development of the Amazon.

In addition to the importance of the biome for the planet’s climate, the partnership between the banks was signed in a year that was especially critical for the region – a year with a significant increase in the deforestation rate. According to data from the National Institute for Space Research (Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais – INPE), between August 2019 and July 2020 (the month Plano Amazônia began), deforestation increased by approximately 9.5% in the biome.(1) The region was also heavily affected by COVID-19, which exacerbated the social vulnerability of the population.

The financial system has the capacity to directly and indirectly contribute to the sustainable use of Brazilian biomes, based on its actions with retail customers or the financing of companies and their chains. In view of this, Plano Amazônia seeks to foster sustainable development in the region with three strategic focus areas:

environmental conservation

Support for environmental conservation and bioeconomic development

basic rights

Ensuring the basic rights of the population

sustainable infrastructure

Investment in sustainable infrastructure

Governance

To ensure the measures make real progress and are aligned with the strategies of the banks involved, we created integrated governance between the Sustainability teams, the CEOs of the banks and specialists in the region.

Advisory board of specialists

To support the implementation of the ten measures for sustainable development in the region, the three banks created an advisory board of highly qualified specialists who have a deep understanding of Brazil’s challenges in the environmental area and, more specifically, in the Amazon.

The professionals who are part of the current board are: Adalberto Luís Val, biologist and researcher at the National Institute for the Amazon Research (Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia – INPA); Adalberto Veríssimo, research associate and co-founder of Imazon and program director at the Centro de Empreendedorismo da Amazônia; André Guimarães, executive director at the Environmental Research Institute for the Amazon (Instituto de Pesquisa Ambiental da Amazônia – IPAM) and co-facilitator of the Coalizão Brasil Clima Florestas e Agricultura; Carlos Afonso Nobre, climate change and the Amazon scientist; Denis Minev, president of Lojas Bemol, co-founder of Fundação Amazonas Sustentável and Museu da Amazônia; Izabella Teixeira, former Environment Minister, biologist and PhD in Environmental Planning from COPPE/UFRJ; and Teresa Vendramini, farmer and president of the Sociedade Rural Brasileira.

Our concern with the environment

We have always been concerned with environmental issues. The ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) agenda has been part of the financial sector’s agenda for some time. At Itaú Unibanco, we take our sustainability agenda very seriously. We have been carrying out socio-environmental risk analysis since 2000 and, in 2004, we were the first institution in Latin America to sign the Equator Principles. However, this is not just a concern for banks and investors; this is a concern for all of us.

Historically, we have always acted proactively in our actions to promote positive impacts. We are the only bank in Latin America that has been part of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index since its inception. Just as we have been part of the portfolio of B3, ISE and Carbono Eficiente sustainability indices since the beginning. In 2019, we signed the Principles of Banking Responsibility (PRB) at the UN headquarters, which aim to align our business with the Sustainable Development Goals.

Floresta

We created the Positive Impact Commitments to generate transparency in our reporting and communications, as well as positive impacts from our business and our conduct. In this way, we ensure that sustainability is in all areas of our institution.

 

Learn about the ten measures of the Amazon Plan:

Aimed at zeroing out illegal deforestation associated with the meat processing industry, strengthening internal diligence actions, supporting transition, and coordinating companies and associations to draw up a sector wide commitment.

We have defined an approach with common strategic guidelines to encourage Brazilian meatpackers’ commitment to meeting their environmental and social responsibilities. We have also implemented a broad diagnosis of the client portfolio with direct and indirect monitoring KPIs, including traceability

Status: Prioritized measure in progress.

Encourage sustainable cultivation across the region through unique financing lines and financial and non-financial tools.

The joint initial target of granting R$100 million in credit to cooperatives and agribusinesses dedicated to the cultivation of sustainable crops has already been exceeded. We have also entered into partnerships to provide technical assistance and develop a proprietary business strategy.

Status: Prioritized measure in progress.

Attract investments to promote partnerships and the development of technologies to foster a bioeconomy.

Note: We support the production of technical content and lines of research to identify the reasons why the share of Amazonian products in the global market is so low, and how to tackle this.

Status: Prioritized measure in progress.

Coordinate and support the implementation of a computerized system to register land ownership and map state and local legislative projects and advocacy activities in connection with the government.

We have delved into the legal and technical frameworks of this topic, based on a study commissioned from reputable law firms.

Status: Prioritized measure in progress.

Foster projects aimed at economic development and preservation through green-backed financial instruments and assets.

Status: Measure in early stage.

Invest in basic infrastructure for the social development of the region.

Status: Measure in early stage.

Encourage projects aimed at economic development and conservation through green assets and financial instruments, such as payment for environmental services (PES) and carbon credits.

Status: Measure in progress.

Incorporate the impacts of climate change on long-term credit and investment policies and enhance the transparency of our reports.

Status: Measure in progress.

2021 HIGHLIGHTS

Expand the scope of business that promote financial inclusion and orientation in the region.

Status: Measure in progress.

2021 HIGHLIGHTS

Coordinate the set-up of a fund for local actors and leaders working with socioeconomic development projects in the region.

Status: Measure in progress.

 

But we don’t stop here. We look to the future and have already developed new initiatives!

Initiatives that are part of this commitment

Initiatives that are part of this commitment 1

The Itaú Amazônia Conference

The Itaú Amazônia Conference brought together experts in the region and renowned national and international fund managers in an online event for debate on important issues for the region's development and investment-related topics.

Click here to see the event

Initiatives that are part of this commitment 2

Itaú Amazônia conference and Instituto Socioambiental

The Itaú Amazônia Conference also raised funds with companies, customers and employees for forest restoration and local income generation projects in partnership with Instituto Socioambiental.

Click here to learn more about the project

Initiatives that are part of this commitment 3

A different kind of cashback

Because we believe in actions that foster the transformational power of people, we joined forces with MasterCard in the Priceless Planet Coalition. In this campaign aimed at making customers aware of the importance of sustainability, Itaú Unibanco allocates part of the value of card purchases on digital channels for the planting and conservation of 60,000 trees in the Amazon. The initiative is part of the Priceless Planet Coalition project to engage customers to adopt more conscious and sustainable consumption behavior, in addition to uniting consumers, financial institutions, stores and cities in the effort to combat climate change through the planting of 100 million trees over five years.
 

 

Support and partnerships

Support and partnerships 1

The Bioeconomia em Foco event

In September of 2021, we held the Bioeconomia em Foco event, which was attended by the CEOs of Itaú, Bradesco and Santander. The Event marked the first year of the Plano Amazônia and brought together specialists on the subject to reflect on the potential and opportunities for building a sustainable economy based on biodiversity and social inclusion.

Click here to see the event

Support and partnerships 2

Amazônia 4.0

Biofactories for the cocoa and cupuaçu chains propose a new business model that includes technology, local knowledge and the preservation of standing forests.

Click here to learn more

Support and partnerships 3

Bioeconomy Innovation Forum

Would you like to know more about the Amazon Bioeconomy? Have a look at the content of the Forum for Innovation in Investment in the Amazon Bioeconomy, a joint initiative of the Concertação pela Amazônia network, made up of different public and private stakeholders, and the Consórcio Interestadual da Amazônia Legal.

Go to the site

Support and partnerships 4

Bradesco, Itaú and Santander join the Brasil Clima Coalition

This multisectoral movement, launched in 2015, is composed of more than 230 leading agribusiness entities in Brazil, civil environmental organizations and academics, among others.

Latest related news

Latest related news 1

Bradesco, Itaú and Santander sign up to the Brazil Climate Coalition

Launched in 2015, this multiple-sector movement encompasses over 230 leading agribusiness entities in Brazil, environmental civil organizations, and representatives from academia, among others.
Latest related news 2

Environmental degradation leads to reduction in the investment flow into Brazil

At the 1st Itaú Amazon Conference held in December 2020, Candido Bracher (CEO) has stated that, in addition to the obvious environmental damage, environmental degradation also causes other losses, such as a reduction in the investment flow into Brazil and even the suspension of some credit lines.
Latest related news 3

Bradesco, Itaú and Santander formalize an advisory board for the Amazon region

Bradesco, Itaú Unibanco and Santander formalized this Wednesday the creation of the Amazon Consultative Council, with the selection of seven specialists to coordinate the implementation of the measures proposed by the banks to stimulate the sustainable development of the region.
Latest related news 4

Bradesco, Itaú Unibanco and Santander launch a joint plan to promote the Amazon’s sustainable development

The proposal prepared by the banks includes 10 measures that have now entered into a detailed phase for implementation in 2020.