There are plenty of wins happening across the world in the fight to get bank to stop funding fossil fuel projects. Here’s a few of the biggest:
Pressure on Crédit Agricole
Right now, French banking giant Crédit Agricole lends billions of dollars a year to fossil fuel companies. Since 2016, they’ve bankrolled fossil fuel companies to the tune of $75 billion. That’s right, BILLION. But thanks to pressure from activists, customers and shareholders, they’re being forced into a change.
Crédit Agricole is reducing the emissions they’re financing by 30% 30% by 2030, and they’re drawing up plans for ending their funding of fossil fuels all-together! It gets better. They’re also committing to cutting their funding to car companies building pollution heavy cars by 50%.
A target like this was unthinkable 5 years ago. It’s only possible due to incredible tonnes of pressure built up over years, mainly by the tremendous campaigners at Reclaim Finance. And they’re in the news.
[BREAKING] @CreditAgricole announced its target to reduce CO2 emissions from oil & gas financing by 30% by 2030👏
The bank must now cement this ambition by becoming the first French bank, as it was on coal, to end support for new oil & gas fields.
— Lucie Pinson (@Lucie_Pinson_) June 22, 2022
Handelsbanken – setting the standard
From A french banking giant, to a Swedish one. Handelsbanken is doing something no other big Nordic bank has done. They’re ending all new lending to any oil and gas company that isn’t planning to stop fossil fuel exploration – that means drilling for NEW oil and gas reserves. It’s another win that will stop billions of pounds going into the pockets of fossil fuel companies.
No exceptions are made for companies that expand their extraction or are involved in Arctic oil or gas extraction, deep-sea extraction of oil or gas, oil sands, oil shale, heavy crude oil, shale oil, shale gas and extraction by hydraulic fracturing, so-called fracking ❤️❤️❤️
This also piles a tonne of pressure on to Danske Bank – the biggest nordic bank. The timing couldn’t be better. Nordic campaigners called out each of the board members at Danske Bank by full name in a major newspaper, asking them to show climate leadership. This Friday, the Chairman of the board replied that they will be the leading bank on sustainable finance in the Nordic region, while continuing to finance fossil fuels 😡.
Ironically, this happened the exact same day that Handelsbanken launched its new policy and became the climate leader of the region. Cue campaigners piling on to embarrass Danske Bank 🙂
The Nordic bank ‘Handelsbanken’ shows climate leadership
It will stop new financing of companies that are expanding their oil and gas extraction
— Eigil Johannisson (@Eigiljo) June 14, 2022
Awesome work from campaigners at Mellemfolkeligt Samvirke!
The UN rule that bank CEOs hate
The world’s biggest fossil fuel banks are part of a climate group called GFANZ (Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero). To be in the group you have to commit to reducing the billions you pour into fossil fuels. Here’s the problem: almost all of the major banks in GFANZ are doing the opposite. They’re continuing to lend billions of dollars to fossil fuel companies, whilst shouting about how green they are: “look, we’re in GFANZ! We must care about the environment”. And no, GFANZ are not throwing them out.
This is on the verge of radically changing. The rules of joining GFANZ are changing. Before, all a bank had to do was commit to reducing fossil fuel funding and release a few weak targets. Now, new rules mean that banks are required to restrict and end all funding for fossil fuels (starting with restricting NEW fossil fuel drilling) if they want to be classed as net-zero, and remain in GFANZ.
This is still up in the air. But the ratchet is turning on big banks choosing to pile cash into fossil fuels. And we won’t stop until they’re out.
Added bonus: Rotterdam Climate March
Last week, people from across the Netherlands flooded to Rotterdam, demanding an end to funding for fossil fuel companies. Hundreds of people turned out to shine a light on a wide range of climate finance issues. Like Dutch bank ING, funding a tonne of different fossil fuel companies and projects. It includes players like Total, who are funding the devastating EACOP pipeline. And giant pipelines like TMEP, which is violating indigenous land in Canada.