Bank of America, one of the largest banks in the United States, is cutting off its financing for coal extraction projects in a bid to reduce its credit exposure to the industry.
“Climate change poses a significant risk to our business, our clients, and the communities in which we operate,” the bank states in its new coal policy.
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“As one of the world’s largest financial institutions, the bank has a responsibility to help mitigate climate change by leveraging our scale and resources to accelerate the transition from a high-carbon to a low-carbon society, and from high-carbon to low-carbon sources of energy.”
The company will still support carbon capture and storage technologies and work with clients, including mining companies, “that are diversifying to other fuel sources,” a spokesperson told The Huffington Post.
Bank of America had previously been a major source of financing for the coal industry, and was under pressure to divest. The company had already been drawing down its coal financing, social responsibility executive Andrew Plepler told a shareholder meeting earlier this month. ”
“Today, our renewable energy portfolio is more than three times as large as our coal extraction portfolio,” he said. “The transition from high-carbon energy to low-carbon energy will continue. At Bank of America, we will continue to do our part to accelerate this transition.”