Printer Friendly

Greens to banks: stop underwriting coal.

The California-based nonprofit Rainforest Action Network (RAN) launched a new campaign last week, trying to influence financial sector powerhouses Citi Group and Bank of America to shift their investments away from coal and other dirty-energy projects and toward clean energy alternatives.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

Coal-fired power plants, while relatively inexpensive to operate, take their toll on the environment in several ways. For starters, coal mining devastates the environment and the viability of surrounding communities, especially when it takes the form of the mountaintop removal mining now common in Appalachia. But of even greater concern to environmentalists is the fact that coal-fired power plants top all other sources of carbon dioxide emissions in the U.S., besides being the largest source of toxic mercury and a top contributor to air pollution, asthma and other environmental woes.

According to research cited by RAN, Citi was the top underwriter of the U.S. coal industry in 2006, with Bank of America following closely behind. Both banks are top lenders to companies proposing to build new coal-fired power plants that, if built, would emit more than 600 million tons of carbon dioxide annually, potentially negating other efforts to combat global warming.

"Bank of America and Citi have the power and the responsibility to stop the imminent climate catastrophe," says RAN's Rebecca Tarbotton. "Rather than taking baby steps on climate change, these banks need to treat this crisis with the urgency they usually reserve for their fiscal bottom line and immediately shift their investments away from coal and toward a clean energy future." Tarbotton adds that until the two banks stop financing coal extraction and electricity generation, they should "expect a multilateral campaign that involves international grassroots pressure, shareholder and board engagement, protests and significant negative media coverage."

Sources: Rainforest Action Network; Planet Ark
COPYRIGHT 2007 Earth Action Network, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2007 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

 Reader Opinion

Title:

Comment:



 

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:THIS WEEK; Rainforest Action Network
Author:Scheer, Roddy
Publication:Our Planet
Article Type:Brief article
Date:Oct 8, 2007
Words:298
Previous Article:Grandma vs. the oil-sands mine.
Next Article:Online eco friends.
Topics:


Related Articles
Green contradictions in Hollywood.
The evolving corporation: the role of stake-holders; Part 2 of a series.
Turning up the noise on CSR: activist groups like the Rainforest Action Network have taken to the streets recently to protest corporate policies. At...
UnWells Fargo.
Banking gets greener: not that long ago, banks were minor actors on the climate-change stage. Now, they are stepping up with major commitments and...

Terms of use | Copyright © 2014 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters