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The U.S. Treasury Department issued new energy financing guidance to multilateral development banks on Monday, saying the United States would oppose their involvement in fossil fuel projects except for some downstream natural gas facilities in poor countries.

The new guidance from the Treasury, the largest shareholder in major development banks including the World Bank Group and the African Development Bank, prioritizes financing for renewable energy options and “to only consider fossil fuels if less carbon-intensive options (are) unfeasible.”

Treasury said in the guidance it would “strongly oppose” coal energy projects across the entire coal value chain from mining, transport to power generation.

But the guidance offered an endorsement of the Asian Development Bank’s work to organize and develop a plan to acquire coal-fired power plants and shut them down early. The effort, first reported by Reuters, includes British insurer Prudential, lenders Citi and HSBC and BlackRock Real Assets, with ambitions for an initial purchase in 2022.

[David Lawder]

More: U.S. Treasury to oppose development bank financing for most fossil fuel projects

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