Bank of America (BofA), along with many others major banks, faced a difficult financial situation during the most recent financial crisis. In the midst of a global banking crisis, BofA was forced to accept a government rescue. Shareholders were concerned about the quality of leadership and decision making at BofA, and they approved a proposal to split the positions of chairman of the board and CEO. This came in response to the financial crisis and BofA’s decision to acquire failing Merrill Lynch and Countrywide Financial. At the same time, a scandal erupted involving $3.6 billion in bonuses paid to Merrill executives at the same time the bank was experiencing huge losses. Ultimately, the federal government intervened with a $20 billion bailout.
For two decades, BofA has focused on energy efficiency, reducing emissions, and limiting waste, even in the wake of its financial meltdown-related troubles. BofA maintains a strong commitment to sustainability in addition to addressing concerns over its financial performance, a stance shareholders support. The company offers customers eco-friendly products and services such as the Brighter Planet Visa and online banking to reduce paper waste, BofA is active in communities, promoting energy efficiency and environmental responsibility. The company committed $20 billion over 10 years to aid businesses addressing global climate change, to create loans for companies developing renewable energy, and to create new jobs. BofA won California’s Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award (GEELA) for its focus on melding environmental stewardship with long-term company management. This award was issued to BofA because of its involvement in solar school initiatives, the creation of Clean Renewable Energy Bonds, and its preservation efforts with redwood forests.
Although BofA admits that its focus on protecting the environment is for profit and economic growth, it also acknowledges it is the responsible stance to take. BofA intends to maintain its sustainability efforts even through recessionary times.
Course Hero Question – How does Bank of America balance sustainability with performance during a difficult financial time?
Criteria – No word limit and no page requirement.
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