Celia and Hugo are 9 and 6 years old. But despite their young age, they already understand why we need to look after our planet. They and their parents have taken part in an activity run by Santander Natura, Banco Santander’s initiative to help preserve ecosystems in Spain.

Caring for our planet is everyone's responsibility. Celia and Hugo know that well (and they’re not even 10 yet!). Both are convinced that we need to act and look after our “home” so that kids like them can continue to enjoy the wonders of nature. They went with their parents to clean up Bastiagueiro beach (a few kilometres outside A Coruña, Spain), alongside volunteers from Asociación Amicos.

Group employees participating in the Santander Natura programme

They did it all with the Santander Natura programme, an initiative that is part of Banco Santander’s commitment to the environment. It brought together employees like Patricia Aramburu, a private banking manager in Galicia, and Yago Barreiro, from the HR team, and their families, to visit the Spanish seashore and pick up plastic in A Coruña.

Group employees and their families
Group employees and their families

Patricia and her daughter Celia, Yago and little Hugo are among over 800 employee volunteers and their families who, since the programme began in 2019, have taken part in projects promoted by Santander, like cleaning up beaches in Galicia and Asturias, planting trees in Zaragoza and Toledo, and picking up plastic and rubbish on the banks of the rivers Tormes, Saja and Guadiana. So far, more than a tonne of waste has been removed, and dozens of kids and teenagers have attended courses on birds, built nesting boxes with recycled materials in forests in Spain, and gained an appreciation for how important it is to care for our planet.

Santander Natura launched in view of a new reality where sustainability is not only on the public agenda, but businesses’ as well. Companies are more concerned about the environment and aware that more customers demand environmental conservation and a fight against climate change.

Banco Santander plans to lead the transition to a green economy. It took its first stemps more than two decades ago by financing the first solar power plants. Today, it’s working to reach net zero emissions by 2050.

Financing renewable energy projects (in which Santander became world leader during the first half of 2022) is a key strategy for Santander to reach that goal, as is taking part in projects like Motor Verde to reforest 70,000 hectares in Spain; recycling expired debit and credit cards to turn them into street furniture in benefit of the circular economy; and having measured its own carbon footprint since 2011 to learn the impact of its operations on the environment. 

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