April 20, 2018 Read More →

HSBC Says No to Financing New Coal Plants

Business Green:

HSBC, the biggest bank in Europe, has today announced it will stop financing coal-fired power stations, oil sands and Arctic offshore drilling projects in a move to support the low-carbon economy. Announced ahead of the bank’s annual meeting today, the decision is likely an attempt to ease pressure from activist investors keen to see HSBC reduce its support for high carbon industries.

In a statement HSBC said the move will apply globally except for three countries – Vietnam, Indonesia and Bangladesh – which it said may be given a five-year “specific dispensation” if experts conclude there is no viable alternative energy source available. HSBC said this was in order to “appropriately balance local humanitarian needs with the need to transition to a low-carbon economy.”

Daniel Klier, group head of strategy and global head of sustainable finance, said the new policy reflects HSBC’s ambition to help its customers transition smoothly to a low-carbon economy.

HSBC had already restricted financing for coal power projects in 78 developed countries. Today’s move expands this stance to almost every country around the world, and sees HSBC promise to exit all existing coal power financing in developed markets by the end of 2019.

HSBC said it will also stop financing new Arctic drilling projects for oil and gas, and greenfield oil sands projects. Other large banks, such as ING and BNP Paribas, have made similar pledges in recent months.

More: HSBC To (Almost) Stop Financing Coal Power


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