The Top 7 Green Banks in 2022 (Fossil Free Bank Review)

It is not a secret that most big banks use customer deposits to fund oil and gas projects. If you are looking for a fossil free bank that fights climate change, you have more options than ever before.

SustainFi   Updated December 4th, 2021

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What are green banks?

In the years since the 2015 Paris Agreement, big banks like Citigroup and Wells Fargo have poured $3.6 trillion into oil, natural gas, and coal projects. So if you drive a Tesla or have rooftop solar, why pay for it all with a card from a bank that funds oil pipelines? If you care about climate change, you may want to look into banks that won’t lend your deposits to a company financing fossil fuels.

Several banking startups won’t use your deposits for oil and gas loans and may even lend the money to clean energy projects. Aspiration, founded in 2013, is one of the older green neobanks in the U.S., but several upstarts– including Atmos and Ando Money – launched in 2021.

And, with many of the green banks, you no longer have to sacrifice getting a high APY on your savings or even perks like cash back rewards. Some banks will even plant trees when you use your card.

Besides being fossil free, most green neobanks also boast certifications like B Corp or Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), or are members of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV). Aspiration donates 10% of earnings to charities. The Clean Energy Credit Union is a credit union, meaning that it is owned by its members-customers, not shareholders.

Green banks are often carbon-neutral in their operations and give loans that fund renewables, home energy efficiency improvements, or electric car purchases. And the card you get is often made from recycled plastic or more sustainable plastic alternatives.

💰 The Best Green Banks

The most environmentally friendly banks

Check out this list of the most popular fossil free banking options.

Aspiration

Rating: Excellent (5 / 5)

Impact AreasClimate change
Minimum Balance$0
Fees• Aspiration account: pay what you want
• Aspiration Plus account: $7.99/month ($5.99/month if you pay upfront for the year)
APY• Aspiration: 3% on the first $10,000
• Aspiration Plus: up to 5% on the first $10,000; 0.10% after that
Accounts Offered• Checking and savings accounts
• Investment accounts
• IRAs
• Credit card
ATMs• 55,000 free in-network ATMs nationwide
• 1 free out-of-network ATM withdrawal per month for Plus accounts

Pros

  • The most established green neobank
  • Your deposits will never fund fossil fuels
  • High-yielding Save account (for balances under $10,000)
  • Great app and online experience
  • A mutual fund that doesn’t invest in fossil fuels
  • Personal impact score for your spending
  • Aspiration donates 10% of every $1 in fees
  • Planet Protection option: Plus account offers automatic offsetting of carbon emissions for each gallon of gas you buy
  • “Plant your change” program rounds up your spending to plant trees

Cons

  • Must spend $1,000/month to receive 3%-5% APY on the first $10,000
  • APY on balances over $10,000 drops to 0.10% for Aspiration Plus members (0% for basic Aspiration accounts)
  • No branches
  • No cash deposits

Founded by Andrei Cherny in 2013, Aspiration is an innovative online bank with social goals. Prior to founding Aspiration, Cherny worked for Bill Clinton and Al Gore, focusing on climate and economic opportunity issues.

Aspiration’s mission is to help customers “make money while making the world a better place.” It’s the only financial institution that lets you pay what you think is right for basic checking account services. Aspiration also donates 10% of fees to nonprofits helping Americans in need. And you can be sure that none of your money goes to fund fossil fuels.

Aspiration offers checking and savings accounts, a recently launched carbon-neutral credit card, IRAs, investment accounts, and a fossil free mutual fund. But it’s the cool extras that make Aspiration shine. As an Aspiration customer, you get a sustainability score of your spending habits, cash back when you spend at sustainable businesses such as TOMS, carbon offsets when you buy gas, and the option to plant trees by rounding your change to the nearest dollar.

In addition, you can get up to 5.0% on the first $10,000 you deposit in the Aspiration Plus account (3% for the Aspiration account). Aspiration Plus costs between $5.99 and $7.99 per month, depending on whether you pay monthly or annually. Interest gets less attractive (0.10%) on deposits over $10,000. (Standard Aspiration accounts do not earn interest on balances over $10,000.)

Side note: Aspiration is technically a broker-dealer, not a chartered bank. However, Aspiration partners with banks to ensure your deposits are FDIC-insured.

🔔 Read a comprehensive review of Aspiration or the new carbon-neutral credit card, Aspiration Zero.

Ando Money

Rating: Excellent (4.1 / 5)

Impact AreasClimate change
Minimum Balance$0
Fees$0
APY • Checking: none
• Savings: 0.17% (up to 5.00% on the first $5,000 if you get five friends to sign up)
Accounts Offered• Checking and savings accounts
ATMs37,000 free in-network ATMs nationwide (Moneypass network)

Pros

  • A neobank focused on fighting climate change
  • Track where your money is invested
  • Earn up to 5.00% APY (on the first $5,000) if you invite five friends and they sign up
  • Earn 1.5% cash back

Cons

  • No branches
  • No sign up bonus
  • Account balance and deposit limits
  • Must invite friends to get 5% APY

San-Diego-based Ando Money is an online bank that invests your deposits exclusively in eco-friendly projects like renewable energy or sustainable agriculture. Ando never funds fossil fuels. Ando’s app has an Impact Center, where you can see what activities your deposits are funding. Ando Money was launched to the public in January 2021.

Ando offers no-fee, no-minimum checking and savings accounts. Checking accounts come with a Visa debit card that uses 80% less plastic than typical cards. Customers have access to a network of 37,000 free ATMs.

You can earn up to 5.00% APY (on the first $5,000) if you get five friends to sign up and they become active customers. The standard APY is 0.17%. You also get 1.5% cash back on debit card purchases.

Your deposits are FDIC insured for up to $250,000 through Community Federal Savings Bank, member FDIC.

🔔 Read a comprehensive review of Ando Money.

Amalgamated Bank

Rating: Excellent (4.3 / 5)

Impact AreasClimate change and sustainability, immigrant rights, LGBTQ rights, criminal justice, workers’ rights, gun safety, and reproductive rights
Minimum Balance$0
Fees$0
APY • Online Checking: up to 0.20%
• Online Savings: 0.40%
Accounts Offered• Checking and savings accounts
• Credit cards
• Investment accounts
• IRAs
ATMs40,000 free in-network ATMs nationwide (Allpoint network)

Pros

  • A politically active bank that doesn’t fund fossil fuels
  • No minimum balances or monthly fees for online accounts

Cons

  • Low app rating
  • No sign on bonus
  • Only six branches

Founded by a labor organizer in 1923, Amalgamated Bank has long championed access to banking regardless of socioeconomic status. Today it is one of the best-known socially responsible banks with over $7.6 billion in assets. Amalgamated Bank is also the only U.S. socially responsible bank listed on a stock exchange.

Amalgamated Bank is a certified B Corp and a member of the GABV. It serves labor unions, nonprofits, social enterprises and contributes to political campaigns that align with its values (which are climate-friendly, pro-choice, and pro-workers right to unionize). Amalgamated Bank has over 400 employees, 60% of whom are women or people of color. The bank has also raised its minimum wage to $20/hour.

Following a 2018 merger with San Francisco’s New Resource Bank, Amalgamated Bank has branches in New York City, Washington, D.C., Boston, and San Francisco. Customers can access a network of over 40,000 ATMs nationwide. In 2021, Amalgamated Bank acquired the Amalgamated Bank of Chicago (no affiliation), another labor union-founded bank with a long history.

Amalgamated Bank is strongly committed to the environment. Its operations are 100% carbon-neutral, and it has pledged not to invest in or lend to fossil fuel companies. The bank also provides hundreds of millions of dollars in solar financing annually.

Amalgamated Bank offers checking and savings accounts, paying up to 0.20% and 0.40% in interest annually. You can open an account online or in-person if you live in New York City, Washington D.C., Boston, or San Francisco. Online accounts have no minimum balance or monthly maintenance fees.

Unfortunately, the mobile app is disappointing.

🔔 Read a comprehensive review of Amalgamated Bank.

Atmos

Rating: Excellent (4.3 / 5)

Impact AreasClimate change
Minimum Balance$0
Fees$0
APY • Checking: none
• Savings: 0.40%-0.80%
Accounts Offered• Checking and savings accounts
ATMs55,000 free in-network ATMs nationwide

Pros

  • 100% of deposits fund climate-positive infrastructure
  • No minimum balance
  • No account maintenance or overdraft fees
  • Attractive APY on savings
  • See the carbon impact of your money
  • Donate to nonprofits through your account

Cons

  • No branches
  • Need to make a donation to earn a 0.80% APY
  • No APY on checking accounts

Launched in January 2021 by Ravi Mikkelsen and Pete Hellwig, ATMOS Financial offers climate-positive checking and savings accounts. ATMOS makes sure that your deposits go to fund clean energy projects, not fossil fuel companies.

At the moment, ATMOS works with its partner, Evolve Bank & Trust, to send your deposits to various FDIC-insured banks, making sure that your deposits are only funding climate-positive projects. Going forward, ATMOS will be sourcing and lending to its own projects, such as rooftop solar, regenerative agriculture, and electrification. Once your deposits are placed, ATMOS will show you the carbon impact of your balances.

ATMOS offers savings accounts for various life events and purchases like electric vehicles, college, kids, etc. Rates on these accounts are more attractive than what you would typically get from traditional banks, especially if you opt to make a donation and get a donation bonus.

ATMOS will add 0.40% to your savings rate when you make monthly recurring donations to at least one ATMOS-approved nonprofit, such as 1% for the Planet. With a donation, you can get a 0.80% APY. Compare this to the 0.01% APY many traditional banks offer.

Neobanks such as ATMOS can offer higher rates on savings accounts because they don’t have to support brick and mortar branches or a legacy tech platform.

In September 2021 Atmos launched checking accounts that let you earn 2-5% cash back on sustainable purchases like charging your EV or shopping with Patagonia.

🔔 Read the complete review of Atmos.

Beneficial State Bank

Rating: Good (3.1 / 5)

Impact AreasSocial justice, the environment
Minimum Balance$0
Fees• eChecking: $0
• Checking: $0 (with a $500 balance, otherwise $5/month)
• Interest Checking: $0 (with a $2,500 balance, otherwise $10/month)
• Savings: $0 (with a $200 balance, otherwise $5/month)
Accounts Offered• Checking and savings accounts
• Money market accounts
• Certificates of deposit
• IRAs
• Credit cards
ATMs37,000 free in-network ATMs nationwide (Moneypass network)

Pros

  • Socially responsible bank with GABV, B Corp, and CDFI credentials
  • BSB doesn’t fund fossil fuels

Cons

  • Low app rating
  • Low APYs
  • Few extras

Founded in 2007 in California, Beneficial State Bank (BSB) offers savings and checking accounts online and via an app. BSB has over $1 billion in assets. Over 75% of BSB’s loans go to affordable housing, renewable energy, and sustainability. BSB does not fund fossil fuels, private prisons, weapons manufacturing, or fracking.

BSB is a certified B-Corp, a member of the GABV, and a certified CDFI. It’s majority-owned by the Beneficial State Foundation, a nonprofit charitable organization that advocates for responsible banking and runs the Clean Vehicle Assistance Program. Bank profits have to be distributed to the Foundation.

Although BSB doesn’t offer a lot of bells and whistles or pay a high APY, it’s a solid option for Pacific Northwest residents who are looking for basic savings and checking accounts from a socially responsible bank.

Clean Energy Credit Union

Rating: Excellent (4.1 / 5)

Impact AreasClimate change
Minimum Balance$5
Fees$0
APY• Checking Account: up to 1.0%
• Savings Account: 0.10% (on balances over $100 only)
Accounts Offered• Checking and savings accounts
• Money market accounts
• Certificates of deposit
• IRAs
ATMs5 free withdrawals from 32,000+ MoneyPass ATMs ($1.5 per transaction after that)

Pros

  • Your deposits fund clean energy loans, not fossil fuels
  • Earn up to 1.0% APY
  • Low minimum balance
  • No monthly service fees for active accounts

Cons

  • You must belong to one of several organizations to be eligible for membership
  • Must meet several criteria to earn interest
  • Only five free ATM withdrawals from a network of 32,000 ATMs

Clean Energy Credit Union (CECU) is a credit union that uses your deposits to fund the climate transition. It is well-known that many big banks use customer deposits to underwrite the fossil fuel industry. In contrast, CECU and green banks like Atmos use customer deposits to finance clean energy.

Every dollar you deposit in your Clean Energy Credit Union finances solar, electric vehicle, home energy efficiency, residential geothermal, or electric bike loans. By banking with CECU and giving them capital to lend, you help lower the cost of clean energy for the broader community.

Unlike a bank, CECU does not have “owners”; instead, it is owned by its members, who elect the Board of Directors. In addition, Clean Energy Credit Union is a nonprofit with a lean business model. There are no brick and mortar branches.

Not everyone can join CECU. Right now, to be eligible for membership, you need to be one of several organizations, such as the American Solar Energy Society or Green America.

🔔 Read the comprehensive review of Clean Energy Credit Union.

Climate First Bank

Rating: Fair (2.9 / 5)

Impact AreasClimate change
Minimum Balance$0
Fees• Checking: $0
• Interest Checking: $15 / month (waived with a daily minimum balance of $2,500)
• Savings: $5 / month (waived with a daily minimum balance of $200)
• Money market: $15 / month (waived with a daily minimum balance of $5,000)
Accounts Offered• Checking and savings accounts
• Money market accounts
• Certificates of deposit
• IRAs
• HSAs
ATMsOver 1,000 Presto! ATM locations at Publix stores

Pros

  • A carbon-neutral bank that doesn’t invest in fossil fuels
  • Solar and electric/hybrid vehicle loans offered

Cons

  • Very low APYs
  • No interest on the no-fee checking account
  • A single branch
  • The ATM network is Florida-based

Climate First Bank is a newly launched bank focusing on environmental sustainability. Based in St Petersburg, Florida, the bank is a member of the GABV and is waiting to be certified as a B Corp.

Climate First has committed to being carbon neutral and never investing in oil and gas extraction. As part of its climate mission, Climate First offers auto loans for electric and hybrid vehicles as well as solar loans.

The bank is led by veteran banker Ken LaRoe, who previously launched and sold First Green Bank, also in Florida.

Climate First offers checking and savings accounts, money markets accounts, certificates of deposits, and IRAs. Any account will also give you access to Climate First’s budgeting tools.

🔔 Read the comprehensive review of Climate First Bank.


If you are worried about your money funding oil and gas projects, it’s not just your checking or savings accounts you should be worried about. Learn more about getting a greener credit card, retirement account, or investment portfolio.

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