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For Immediate Release 

Tanya Peebles-Hill
(213) 236-5329

Orith Farago
(714) 582-2300

Several Southern California branches to provide reusable bags for consumers


MANHATTAN BEACH, CA, December 14, 2011 – As part of its ongoing commitment to responsible banking through environmental stewardship, Union Bank, N.A., has partnered with Heal the Bay to participate in the organization’s fifth annual A Day Without a Bag educational campaign to raise consumer awareness about making sustainable choices. On December 15, shoppers and retailers are asked to utilize reusable bags in place of single-use plastic or paper shopping bags to help encourage environmentally friendly choices in the future.

As part of the day-long event, the bank’s Hermosa Beach branch (located at 1401 Pacific Coast Highway) and two Manhattan Beach branches (located at 2910 North Sepulveda Boulevard and 400 Manhattan Beach Boulevard) will join the bank’s other participating branch offices in Los Angeles, Marina del Rey and Santa Monica to provide complimentary reusable bags to Southland consumers.

“Heal the Bay is grateful for Union Bank’s leadership on educating shoppers about the ecological and economic benefits of using reusable bags,” said Heal the Bay Executive Director Karin Hall. According to Heal the Bay, California municipalities spend nearly $25 million annually to collect and dispose of plastic bag waste. Less than five percent of plastic grocery bags are recycled annually in Los Angeles, with the remainder clogging landfills, littering public spaces and harming animal life when the bags infiltrate waterways. Paper bags, while biodegradable, still require vast amounts of fossil fuels and water to produce, distribute and collect for disposal.

“We’re proud to support Heal the Bay in this important effort to encourage sustainable choices to benefit the environment,” said Union Bank Senior Vice President and Regional Manager Christine Sarkissof. “We strongly believe in preserving the environment, and it remains one of our core values -- our participation is one of the ways we demonstrate our commitment at the community level.”

Union Bank has received recognition for its ongoing environmental consciousness, including BREATHE LA’s top honor—the Breath of Life Award—presented annually to innovators and inspiring individuals who promote clean air and pulmonary health in Los Angeles County and the LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification from the Green Building Certification Institute for the bank’s San Diego headquarters building. Thirty-four Union Bank retail branches throughout California have also earned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) ENERGY STAR award, the national symbol for energy efficiency, saving money, preventing the release of greenhouse gases, and protecting the environment.

About UnionBanCal Corporation & Union Bank, N.A.
Headquartered in San Francisco, UnionBanCal Corporation is a financial holding company with assets of $84 billion at September 30, 2011. Its primary subsidiary, Union Bank, N.A., is a full-service commercial bank providing an array of financial services to individuals, small businesses, middle-market companies, and major corporations. The bank operated 404 full-service branches in California, Washington, Oregon and Texas, as well as two international offices, on September 30, 2011. UnionBanCal Corporation is a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd., which is a subsidiary of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. Union Bank is a proud member of the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG, NYSE:MTU), one of the world’s largest financial organizations. Visit for more information.