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.
“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.”