Pages tagged "coal"


Bankrolling climate chaos: banks kept coal on life support in 2014

***For Immediate Release***
Monday, May 4, 2015

Contact:
Claire Sandberg, Rainforest Action Network: +01-646-641-6431 claire@ran.org
Yann Louvel, BankTrack: +33 688 907 868, yann@banktrack.org
Ruby Shirazi, Sierra Club: +01 201 562 8560, ruby.shirazi@sierraclub.org


Sixth annual coal finance report card finds global banks pumped billions into coal finance in 2014, despite warning signs of coal's systemic decline

To download the full report, with 2014 bank grades:http://bit.ly/1IGbSOJ

At a time when declarations about “the end of coal” abound, leading financial institutions have continued to put billions of dollars into coal mining and coal-fired power, despite dire warnings from climate scientists that we must end coal use immediately to avert catastrophic levels of global warming. Global banks collectively financed $144 billion for coal mining and coal power companies in 2014, according to the annual coal finance report card released today by Rainforest Action Network, BankTrack, and the Sierra Club. The findings in the 2015 report card indicate that, despite a dismal long-term financial outlook for the coal industry, banks have thus far been willing to prolong the demise of coal in the service of short-term profits—and at the expense of the global climate.

This year’s report card, titled “The End of Coal?”, does identify some bright spots in coal finance, with a critical mass of banks saying “no” to particularly destructive coal mining projects and practices, including proposed development of the Galilee Basin in Australia, and mountaintop removal mining in the United States. In addition, in 2014 key financial industry voices concluded that the shift away from fossil fuels has reached a turning point, with Goldman Sachs concluding that coal for power production has “reached its retirement age” and Bloomberg New Energy Finance marking the “beginning of the end" for fossil fuels. But despite these pronouncements, the end of coal will not come soon enough to limit climate change to internationally-agreed upon safe levels, unless banks act to drastically and rapidly end financing for coal.

“Many leading banks have acknowledged that financial institutions have a responsibility to usher in the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy,” said Ben Collins, Senior Climate and Energy Campaigner at Rainforest Action Network. “Unfortunately, the same institutions that frequently tout their clean energy investments and LEED-certified headquarters are also keeping the coal industry on life support at time when climate scientists tell us we need to leave almost all coal in the ground, starting immediately, if we want to keep climate change to levels compatible with ongoing human civilization. We saw some signs of progress in 2014 with banks steering clear of some particularly egregious mining projects and practices, like Australia’s Galilee Basin and mountaintop removal mining in the U.S. Appalachian region. But unfortunately it’s not enough. We need banks to respond with leadership to the existential threat posed by climate change. Coal will die one way or another, but if banks wait to ditch coal until the market forces them to, the death of coal will come too late for the climate.”

Yann Louvel, BankTrack's climate and energy coordinator, said, “Looking at the slow evolution of bank policies related to the environmental and climate impacts of their coal financing, this year's report card is showing some positive signs of individual steps forward here and steps forward there. However, with time fast running out for proactive climate action to have any meaningful effect, the banks are basically fiddling with their policies while more and more coal burns as a result of entrenched levels of coal financing. It's outrageous for some banks to be hitching themselves to this year's UN climate negotiations in Paris as 'climate leaders' while they are not prepared to pull out of all coal sector financing, end of story. The banks' attention to the human rights considerations that are always involved in coal sector financing are patchy at best, and amount to little more than lip service to the UN human rights obligations that so many of them are signed up to. For as long as these banks continue to be coal industry supporters, they have to substantially beef up their human rights due diligence to protect communities in the industry's firing line around the world.”

Bruce Nilles, Senior Campaign Director, Beyond Coal at the Sierra Club said, "While there is demonstrated progress on the part of financial institutions, it's too little and too slow moving if we're to see any real impact on the climate disruption or public health. Banks need to better own their role and more actively harness their influence to transition off dirty energy sources."

Key findings from the 2015 report card:

• In spite of the financial distress faced by the coal industry overall, banks have approached financing decisions in a piecemeal fashion, with global financing for coal mining and top coal-fired power companies holding steady at $144 billion, compared to $145 billion in 2013.

• Disappointingly, major banks have also continued to finance several worst-of-the-worst “extreme coal” producers with major human and environmental impacts. Continued exposure to these coal mining companies shows that several banks continue to fail to meet basic human rights and environmental responsibilities.

• Global bank financing for coal mining, 2014: $69.62 billion (up from $55.28 billion in 2013)

• Global bank financing for the 30 largest coal-fired power producers, 2014: $74.39 billion, (down from $89.62 billion in 2013)


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Coal Finance Report Card 2015

► Download full report ◀

MEDIA: Press release here. For inquiries, contact:

Claire Sandberg, Rainforest Action Network: +01-646-641-6431, claire@ran.org
Yann Louvel, BankTrack: +33 688 907 868, yann@banktrack.org
Ruby Shirazi, Sierra Club: +01 201 562 8560, ruby.shirazi@sierraclub.org

Summary

There's a growing global recognition that it's time for banks to stop funding coal: it's financially risky and implicates them in serious environmental and human rights abuses. But the largest global investment banks continued to finance coal mining and power last year.

As the 2015 Coal Finance Report Card, The End of Coal?, published by Rainforest Action Network, BankTrack, and the Sierra Club, makes clear:

  • Even with the financial distress faced by the global coal industry in 2014, global financing for coal mining and top coal-fired power companies held steady at $144 billion, compared to $145 billion in 2013.

  • Disappointingly, major banks have also financed several worst-of-the-worst "extreme coal" producers with major human and environmental impacts. Continued exposure to these coal mining companies shows that several banks continue to fail to meet their basic human rights and environmental responsibilities.

  • On the positive side, in 2014, a critical mass of banks said "no" to particularly destructive coal mining projects and practices, including proposed development of the Galilee Basin in Australia, and mountaintop removal mining in the United States.

This year's report card rates the coal financing policies and practices of the largest global banks and highlights key case studies of global coal mining and power companies.

The banking industry must heed the warning signs of coal's systemic crisis, and take immediate steps to cut ties with the industry. If banks wait for the market to force them to transition away from coal, it will be too late for the climate.

► Download full report ◀

The_End_of_Coal_2015_pg5.jpg

► Download full report ◀

 

 


Barclays cuts ties with mountaintop removal coal, says MTR will be “phased out” soon

Barclays was the world’s top lender to mountaintop removal coal firms prior to announcing new policy

Barclays PLC, the number one bankroller of mountaintop removal (MTR) coal mining worldwide in 2013, has announced it is ending its financial support to the controversial practice. Barclays ruled out future financing for mountaintop removal projects and companies, citing MTR’s negative environmental and social impacts, as well as market forces. In its policy statement, Barclays also forecast that MTR will soon be “phased out” entirely, as a result of increased market and regulatory pressures. The Barclays announcement comes just weeks after U.S.-based PNC Financial announced its own policy restricting financing for MTR coal producers.

Full Barclays policy available here: http://bit.ly/1bRGcsM

Reacting to the news of the announcement, Rainforest Action Network Senior Climate and Energy Campaigner Ben Collins issued the following statement:

“It’s a big deal when the world’s number one bankroller of mountaintop removal announces it has rescinded its support to this destructive practice. We’re going to monitor Barclays’s future financing decisions very closely to see how this policy is implemented, but overall the announcement is a very good step in the right direction.

“It’s also a powerful affirmation of what we’ve been saying for years to see Barclays predict that mountaintop removal will be ‘phased out’ as a result of both market and regulatory pressure. That stark assessment points to just how toxic and risky this practice has become in the eyes of the financial industry. However, our work is not done yet; we won’t declare victory until mountaintop removal ends. Not only does mountaintop removal literally destroy entire mountains, but it leaves widespread devastation in its wake for communities across Appalachia.

“Following this news, we will continue to exert pressure on laggard banks that put their financial support behind a practice that has no place in a civilized society. Banks like Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs should take note of the decision by Barclays and adopt their own policies to end financing for mountaintop removal.”

Barclays was number one worldwide in financing for mountaintop removal coal producers in 2013, as documented in the 2014 Coal Finance Report Card,“Extreme Investments, Extreme Consequences,” released by Rainforest Action Network, the Sierra Club, and BankTrack. In 2013, Barclays financed $550 million in loan and bond transactions for mountaintop removal producers, acting as lead arranger in seven of these transactions.

RAN has campaigned to push numerous banks to stop financing mountaintop removal coal mining. JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, BNP Paribas, UBS, RBS, Société Générale, and PNC Financial have all previously adopted policies restricting financing for MTR, under pressure from RAN and other groups. The 2015 Coal Finance Report Card will be released later this month.

For additional information on market trends in mountaintop removal finance, including summaries of various bank positions on MTR, please see the following background memo: http://a.ran.org/s1w

 contact:

Claire Sandberg, (U.S.) 646-641-6431, claire@ran.org


Tweet to protect the Great Barrier Reef

The U.S. government’s Export-Import Bank wants to finance a huge coal project that would put Australia’s Great Barrier Reef at risk. We are calling on Fred Hochberg, Chair of the Export-Import Bank, to stop the destruction.

Click the links below to send a tweet and take action:

EXIM_TweetStorm_Turtle.png

Thanks to your pressure last year, many of the world’s largest banks have said “no” to financing a huge coal project that would put Australia’s Great Barrier Reef at risk. But the Reef is still in danger. As you know, news reports have revealed that the U.S. government’s Export-Import Bank is considering financing this destructive project.

Thousands have taken to social media, calling on Fred Hochberg, Chair of the Export-Import Bank, to stop the destruction. Click now to add your voice!

Funding the Abbot Point coal port expansion is a step in the wrong direction. The port expansion and the coal mines that would feed it would gravely damage the Great Barrier Reef and accelerate climate change. The resultant dredging and ship traffic would threaten one of the world’s most biodiverse ecosystems, a global treasure that is under protection as a World Heritage Site. Even Wall Street thinks the coal industry's plan to build a giant coal port in the middle of the reef is too toxic to fund. It’s ridiculous that a U.S. bank supported by taxpayer dollars would even consider funding such a destructive project.  

Send a tweet to Fred Hochberg, Chair of the Export-Import Bank: Don’t finance Big Coal’s reef destruction!

We know that our pressure can help to stop the coal industry’s reef destruction. Thanks to your pressure, major banks have publicly committed not to fund this project, because it would be a disaster for the climate, the reef, and their bottom lines. Not only would this perpetuate climate chaos, the proposed Abbot Point expansion could threaten the breeding grounds of endangered green and loggerhead turtles.

In concert with our allies at the Sierra Club, Greenpeace, 350 and Friends of the Earth, we’ve been ramping up the pressure at the Export-Import Bank about this issue. We need to insure they are hearing loud and clear how dangerous investing in this project would be.    

This is the perfect time for us to creatively change how we’re communicating with the bank, and we’ve discovered a great angle. Fred Hochberg, chair of the U.S. Export-Import Bank, is very active on twitter, tweeting nearly every day.

It’s time to amplify our message by tweeting at Fred Hochberg. Right now and through the week, send a tweet to @Fredhochberg about the proposed Abbot Point coal port expansion that the Export-Import Bank is considering financing.

The U.S. government’s Export-Import Bank isn’t used to having citizens weigh in on their decisions and Fred Hochberg isn’t used to having people communicate with him though his Twitter account. We have a great opportunity to impact his decision on whether or not to fund this destructive project. Let’s keep up the pressure so he knows we’ll be petitioning, calling and tweeting until this proposal is off the table.

 

 

Additional Information:

1. "US Banks baulk at Abbot Point coal port expansion", The Australian, October 28, 2014

2. "Adani lines up $1 bln Indian state bank loan for Australian coal venture", Reuters, November 17, 2014 

3. "Great Barrier Reef", United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization


PNC Bank Policy on Mountaintop Removal a Positive Step

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

March 2, 2014

contact: Claire Sandberg, 646-641-6431claire@ran.org

Today PNC Financial Services Group joined the growing ranks of financial institutions that have officially sanctioned the coal mining practice known as mountaintop removal (MTR.) Citing concerns about the environmental and health impacts of MTR, as well as financial risks, PNC pledged to no longer extend credit to individual MTR mining projects or to firms with 25 percent or more of their production coming from MTR.

Rainforest Action Network (RAN), which has for years worked to push the financial sector to disavow MTR, hailed the new PNC policy as a positive indication that MTR is increasingly seen as being unbankable. “PNC took a big step in the right direction today by acknowledging the serious health and environmental impacts of mountaintop removal, and by committing to reduce its exposure to this toxic practice. We’ll be scrutinizing PNC’s future financing decisions to see how this new policy is implemented,” said RAN Climate and Energy Program Director Amanda Starbuck. “Overall, we see today’s news as indicative of a broader trend within the financial sector. Banks no longer want to be associated with a dangerous, abhorrent practice like mountaintop removal; there is an emerging financial industry consensus that these practices are unacceptable. Concretely, this means mountaintop removal companies will have a harder time securing financing to operate and expand in the future.”

With this new commitment, PNC joins the growing ranks of banks that have adopted policies to cut financing for top MTR producers. JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, RBS, BNP Paribas, and UBS have all cut ties with firms that specialize in mountaintop removal.

PNC’s new MTR policy, released today as part of the PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. 2015 Corporate Responsibility Report (available online here), reads as follows:

“Driven by environmental and health concerns, as well as our risk appetite, we introduced a mountaintop removal (MTR) financing policy in late 2010 and subsequently enhanced that policy in 2014. As a result, our MTR financing exposure has declined significantly and will continue to do so moving forward. Overall, PNC’s exposure to firms participating in MTR represents less than one-quarter of 1 percent of PNC’s total financing commitments. Under the policy, PNC will not extend credit to individual MTR mining projects or to coal producers with 25 percent or more of their production coming from MTR mining.”

In an introduction to the 2015 CSR report, PNC CEO William Demchak also wrote, “Our businesses implemented a number of important changes in 2014 to make environmental considerations a more prominent factor in PNC’s lending while still balancing those considerations with the economic needs of the communities we serve. As part of these efforts, we enhanced PNC’s mountaintop removal (MTR) financing policy. Due to environmental and health concerns, as well as our risk appetite, our MTR financing exposure has declined significantly over time, with current exposure to firms participating in MTR representing less than one-quarter of one percent of PNC’s total financing commitments, and it will continue to decline.


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RAN Slams Citigroup Over Greenwashing

Citigroup’s new clean energy commitment fails to reduce fossil fuel exposure

In response to the announcement today of Citigroup’s five-year sustainability strategy and ten-year sustainability financing commitment, Rainforest Action Network (RAN) Climate and Energy Program Director Amanda Starbuck issued the following statement:

“The number one financier of coal power in the U.S. wants people to look the other way while it bankrolls climate chaos and destruction. Citigroup’s announcement of a new clean energy target today, absent a similarly ambitious commitment to reducing fossil fuel exposure, amounts to greenwashing, plain and simple. Citi was the number one lender and underwriter of coal-fired power in 2013, and the same year it also financed $434 million for mountaintop removal coal mining, which is poisoning communities in Appalachia. It’s misleading for Citi to leverage its green investments as a PR opportunity while shirking its responsibility to communities and to the climate. There’s no green energy on a dead planet.”

Citigroup announced a $100 billion clean energy target today as its ten-year sustainability financing commitment, but made no promises to reduce its exposure to fossil fuels, despite being the number one financier of coal-fired power in the United States, with a 23.6 percent market share and over $6.4 billion in lending and underwriting for coal power in 2013 alone, according to “Extreme Investments, Extreme Consequences,” the 2014 coal finance report card released by Rainforest Action Network, BankTrack, and the Sierra Club.

contact: Claire Sandberg, 646-641-6431claire@ran.org

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RAN Denounces Australian Government for Lobbying on Behalf of Coal Project

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

February 11, 2015

Contact: Claire Sandberg, 646-641-6431claire@ran.org

Australian diplomat lobbied U.S. banks to bankroll coal port that would turbocharge climate change and wreck the Great Barrier Reef

Documents released via open records request available here: http://a.ran.org/f1F 

Rainforest Action Network (RAN) denounced the Australian government’s interventions on behalf of the coal industry, following the release of documents showing an Australian diplomat lobbied U.S. banks in support of the controversial Abbot Point coal export project in Queensland, Australia. Correspondence obtained through an open records request by Australian anti-coal group Market Forces show that Australian consul general Nick Minchin met with several U.S. banks in New York in November 2014 to try and shore up support for the proposed expansion of the Abbot Point coal port, shortly after Rainforest Action Network secured public commitments to steer clear of Abbot Point from U.S. banking giants Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley.

Rainforest Action Network Climate and Energy Program Director Amanda Starbuck criticized the Australian government’s full-throated backing of Abbot Point. “It’s shameful that the Australian government would go out of its way to serve as a lobbyist for the financial interests of the coal industry,” said Starbuck. “This project, if completed, would be arguably the world’s single most destructive coal project. The proposed port expansion would unlock one of the largest stores of carbon on the planet, the Galilee Basin, which we simply must keep in the ground if we want to avert the most catastrophic impacts of climate change. On top of that, constructing the project would require dredging part of the Great Barrier Reef, one of the world’s irreplaceable natural treasures.”

The issue of coal’s impact on the Great Barrier Reef has been a matter of contention between President Obama and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott. Abbott has called coal “good for humanity,” and given strong backing to Abbot Point and other coal infrastructure projects, while President Obama has called on Australia to do more to protect the reef, and has spoken publicly about the threat climate change poses to the reef. UNESCO is currently considering whether to officially designate the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Site as “in danger” due to the threat posed by Abbot Point.

The revelations of Australian government pressure on U.S. banks comes as RAN builds on the success of earlier campaigning to further marginalize Abbot Point from potential financial backers. In recent weeks, RAN has turned its attention to the U.S. Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im), following reports that the bank might be considering involvement in the deal. “U.S. tax dollars should be invested in climate solutions, not in throwing coal a financial lifeline and trashing a global treasure like the Great Barrier Reef,” said Starbuck. “Even Wall Street thinks the coal industry's plan to build a giant coal port in the middle of the reef is too toxic to fund. It’s time for the Export-Import Bank to follow suit.”

Ex-Im Chairman Fred Hochberg has not responded to RAN requests for the bank to clarify its stance on the project, beyond confirming that a formal application for financing has not yet been received. Last week, RAN members participated in a call-in day to the Export-Import Bank’s public hotline and urged the bank to stay away from Abbot Point.

The proposed expansion of Abbot Point is critical to the plan to open up coal reserves in the Galilee Basin. Nine new mega coal mines are currently slated for the area, five of which would be bigger than any coal mine currently operating in Australia, with an estimated 705 million tons of potential carbon emissions annually. If Galilee Basin coal is mined and shipped overseas through Abbot Point as planned, Australia would move from the number two to number one coal exporter in the world.

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Make a call to protect the Great Barrier Reef

Last week we sent a strong statement with petitions to the U.S. government’s Export-Import Bank, telling them to stay away from the Great Barrier Reef coal port expansion — a deal that would wreck the Reef and cook the climate!

Now it’s time to amplify our message by making a call to the bank. Here’s how you can help:

Call this number: 1-800-565-EXIM (or 1-800-565-3946)

The line is open from 8am-8pm Eastern time.

Leave a message if your receive a recording. If you get a live operator, politely tell them why you called:

“I’m calling to tell the Ex-Im Bank not to finance Great Barrier Reef destruction!  Please pass the following message on to chairman Hochberg. The proposed Abbot Point coal port in Australia would damage the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage site, and cook the climate. It’s too dirty for Wall Street, and it’s too dirty for Ex-Im Bank. Don’t finance reef destruction!”

ExIm_callin_v2_FB.png

Fred Hochberg, chair of the U.S. Export-Import Bank, recently launched a brand new customer support hotline. So far, this new line has only been receiving about 30 calls a day, and Hochberg has said he wants to get more people using this number. Let’s set a new record for daily calls, and send a clear message: don’t finance reef destruction!

The bank isn’t used to having citizens weigh in on their decisions. But when it comes to protecting the Great Barrier Reef and preventing climate change, we can’t afford to remain silent. Let’s make sure that the U.S. Export-Import Bank knows we'll fight to stop them from financing reef destruction.

Our petition got their attention: they know the public is watching what they will do on this issue. Now drive the point home by making a personal phone call to the bank’s hotline.

 

Sources:


1. "Great Barrier Reef protection plan 'ignores the threat of climate change'", The Guardian, October 27, 2014 
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/oct/27/great-barrier-reef-protection-plan-ignores-threat-climate-change

2. "Fred Hochberg, Chairman & President, Export-Import Bank", Federal News Radio, December 4, 2014 
http://www.federalnewsradio.com/85/3756061/Fred-Hochberg-Chairman-President-Export-Import-Bank


Don’t let Big Coal destroy the Great Barrier Reef

Thanks to your pressure, several of the world’s largest banks have said “no” to financing a huge coal project that would put Australia’s Great Barrier Reef at risk.1 But now, news reports have revealed that the U.S. government’s Export-Import Bank is considering financing this destructive project.2

Tell the U.S. government’s Export-Import Bank -- don’t finance the destruction of the Great Barrier Reef!

EXIM_turtles_FB_v2.png

This is an outrage: The U.S. government should be investing in climate solutions, not throwing coal a financial lifeline and trashing a global treasure such as the Great Barrier Reef. Even Wall Street thinks the coal industry's plan to build a giant coal port in the middle of the reef is too toxic to fund; late last year, thanks to your activism, Rainforest Action Network secured commitments to steer clear of the project from four of the biggest investment banks on Wall Street. Citibank, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, and Goldman Sachs all provided RAN with written promises to stay away from this climate- and reef-killing project.3 If this project is beyond the pale for Wall Street's biggest banks, there's no excuse for the U.S. government to commit taxpayer money to destroy the reef and turbocharge climate change.

Add your voice to our petition calling on the Export-Import Bank not to finance reckless coal port expansion.

We know that our pressure can help to stop the coal industry’s reef destruction. Thanks to your pressure, major banks have publicly committed not to fund this project, because it would be a disaster for the climate, the reef, and their bottom lines. Not only would this perpetuate climate chaos, the proposed Abbot Point expansion could threaten the breeding grounds of endangered green and loggerhead turtles.4 Now, it is time to use our voices to prevent the U.S. government from financing reef destruction.

Momentum is building to stop the coal industry from damaging the Great Barrier Reef. President Obama recently spoke out at a summit, urging Australia to protect the reef.5 Hundreds of thousands of global citizens have spoken out against reef destruction, and a group of ten European and U.S. banks has already walked away from the project. Now we need to make sure the U.S. government says “no” to coal port expansion in the Great Barrier Reef.

Send the message to Fred Hochberg, Chair of the Export-Import Bank: Don’t finance Big Coal’s reef destruction!

As an agency of the U.S. federal government, the Export-Import Bank’s mission is to finance the sale of U.S.-made products, not to finance foreign-owned coal ports across the world. If we speak up, Export-Import Bank chairman Fred Hochberg will hear us. Late last year, Hochberg urged the public to submit feedback about how the bank is doing. Now is the time to send a clear message that the taxpayer-supported Export-Import bank needs to stay away from the coal industry’s Great Barrier Reef destruction.

 

Sources:

1. "US Banks baulk at Abbot Point coal port expansion", The Australian, October 28, 2014
http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/mining-energy/us-banks-baulk-at-abbot-point-coal-port-expansion/story-e6frg9df-1227104282562

2. "Adani lines up $1 bln Indian state bank loan for Australian coal venture", Reuters, November 17, 2014 
http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/11/17/adani-ent-australia-coal-idUSL3N0T769720141117

3. "US banks vow not to fund Great Barrier Reef coal port, activists say", The Guardian, October 27, 2014 
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/oct/28/us-banks-vow-not-to-fund-great-barrier-reef-coal-port-say-activists

4. "Great Barrier Reef", United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/154

5. "Barack Obama confronts Australia over climate change", The Telegraph, November 15, 2014 
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/barackobama/11232915/Barack-Obama-confronts-Australia-over-climate-change.html


Export-Import Bank: Don't finance destruction of the Great Barrier Reef

I am alarmed at reports that the U.S. Export-Import Bank is considering funding Australia’s Abbot Point coal port expansion. The port expansion and the coal mines that would feed it would gravely damage the Great Barrier Reef and accelerate climate change. The resultant dredging and ship traffic would threaten one of the world’s most biodiverse ecosystems, a global treasure that is under protection as a World Heritage Site. The deal would pave the way to double coal production in Australia -- already one of the world’s biggest coal exporters -- in the midst of a climate emergency. Under no circumstances should U.S. taxpayer dollars fund this reckless and destructive project. Please make a public commitment not to bankroll the Abbot Point coal port expansion and associated rail and mine infrastructure.

 

Background

The coal industry is embarking on a project that would do grave damage to the Great Barrier Reef by massively expanding the port at Abbot Point and building new coal mines in Queensland, Australia. The resultant dredging and ship traffic would devastate this delicate ecosystem, a global treasure that is under protection as a World Heritage Site. Additionally, the proposed Abbot Point expansion could threaten the breeding grounds of endangered green and loggerhead turtles.

The climate impacts would be catastrophic, as building out Abbot Point would mean a dramatic expansion of coal mining in Australia's Galilee Basin, one of the world's largest stores of carbon. The planned mega-mines would be among the largest in Australia, and would dramatically increase greenhouse gas pollution.

The coal industry needs international bank funding to make their reckless new project happen. Many global banks have already said “no” to financing the project. As a result of campaigning from Rainforest Action Network, U.S. banks Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley have already ruled out financing for Abbot Point. Leading European investment banks, including HSBC, Barclays, and Deutsche Bank have made similar commitments.


Call on the U.S. Export-Import Bank to do the same.

 

Additional Information:

Adani lines up $1 billion SBI loan for Australian coal venture, Reuters, November 17 2014

Great Barrier Reef protection plan 'ignores the threat of climate change', The Guardian, October 27 2014

Great Barrier Reef, Unesco 

 

 



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