UK - Nearly two-thirds of the UK public thinks banks should have ethical lending policies in place to prevent them from investing in or lending to companies involved in controversial areas such as arms manufacturing or companies with poor records on the environment and human rights.

At the same time, figures from non-profit research organisation EIRIS show that the amount of money invested ethically in the UK has risen by 289% over the last decade.

The national online consumer survey, conducted by Ipsos MORI on behalf of EIRIS, explores current consumer attitudes to green and ethical finance.

In the wake of the BP oil spill, 82% of the UK public think it is important for financial product providers to pay more attention to environmental, social and governance risks when deciding which companies to invest in or lend money to.

In total, 66% of the survey respondents think banks and other financial institutions have not learned the lessons needed to prevent a future financial crisis, but instead have reverted to 'business as usual'. 

Respondents were presented with a list of ways banks or financial institutions could offer more to their customers.

Ranked highest (77%) was the disclosure of information on how and where banks invest their money.

In October, extra-financial analysis provider Vigeo found that total assets under management in European social responsible (SRI) mutual funds rose by 41% from €53bn to €75bn within 12 months.

The Green, Social and Ethical Funds in Europe 2010 Review also revealed that SRI funds grew by 29% over the year from 683 to 879, with the biggest growths recorded in France, Switzerland, Germany and Belgium.