The recently released Banking on Climate Change report by the Rainforest Action Network demonstrates that banks are increasing their funding into fossil fuels projects.
JPMorgan Chase remains in first place for funding dangerous fossil fuel projects, while Citibank, Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley have increased their funding of fossil fuels.
Danielle Fugere, President of As You Sow, said this is despite the global need to decrease climate change emissions.
“Despite banks’ various statements and reports about acting on climate change, the numbers tell a different story. No amount of clean energy funding or environmental risk policies can offset the growth in funding of fossil fuel projects that contribute to catastrophic climate change,” she said.
Ms Fugere said shareholders, whose portfolios are already being impacted by climate change, are greatly disappointed by these results.
“We cannot hope to change direction on climate change if funding for fossil fuels does not begin to decrease immediately and substantially,” she said.
“To foster this change, shareholders are asking banks to immediately begin measuring and disclosing their financed emissions and, most importantly, adopt Paris-aligned reduction goals for their fossil fuel funding — sending the message that their client companies must also change direction.”
Lila Holzman, Energy Program Manager of As You Sow, said the report highlights the urgency with which banks need to step up and drastically change course.
“In recent months, we have seen announcements and commitments that signal first steps toward taking responsibility. Methodologies such as the Partnership for Carbon Accounting Financials (PCAF) and Science-Based Targets (SBT) are being developed to provide more transparency on the full emissions footprints of bank portfolios and how those do, or do not, align with the progress we need to achieve Paris goals.
“However, we cannot afford to wait years for banks to begin disclosing such carbon accounting measurements. This report highlights that banks must do more and more quickly to reduce their share of emissions.”