Blasting off mountaintops to reach coal in Appalachia or churning out millions of tons of carbon dioxide to extract oil from sand in Alberta are among environmentalists’ biggest industrial irritants. But they are also legal and lucrative.
“We’re the greenest bank in the business,” claims Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based PNC bank (PNC:US) on its web site. “We’re a company committed to lighting the path to a greener way of doing business and a greener way of life.”
SAN FRANCISCO—Within the last two years, Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo along with Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley have successively passed public policies limiting their financial relationships with coal operators that practice mountaintop removal (MTR) coal mining. These banks were the lead financiers of the practice prior to their policy shifts. Last month, Wells Fargo became the fourth top US bank to adopt a position limiting MTR financing.
BofA Cutting Off Financing for Mine Operator; UBS Remains Large Lender
Massey Energy, owners of the West Virginia mine that exploded Monday, has drawn criticism for an array of safety violations and environmental issues over the years -- so much so that even some big Wall Street banks refuse to finance the Richmond, Va.-based company.
WASHINGTON— Today, activists with the Rainforest Action Network staged a four hour sit-in at the EPA headquarters to demand stronger protection for Appalachia’s drinking water and an end to the devastating practice of mountaintop removal (MTR) coal mining.
SAN FRANCISCO– Just last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency gave the Army Corps of Engineers a green light for the Pine Creek mine permit, a mountaintop removal (MTR) mining site in Logan County, W.Va. This is the first permit decision the EPA has issued under the new mountaintop mining guidelines, which came out last April and were anticipated to provide tougher oversight of mountaintop removal coal mining.
Washington, D.C. (5/20/10)— Today activists with the Rainforest Action Network attended the 2:00pm Massey Energy hearing before the Senate HELP (Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions) Committee. RAN activists were present to ensure that Massey’s controversial CEO, Don Blankenship, was held accountable for his role in the April 5, 2010 Upper Big Branch mine explosion where 29 miners tragically died. They were also calling attention to the company’s repeated mine safety and environmental violations.