The Co-operative Bank has confirmed it will continue to steer clear of providing finance for coal mining and coal power by signing BankTrack’s Paris Pledge.
The pledge has now been signed by 18 banks from 10 countries, with collectively more than EUR 85 billion in assets under management.
The Co-op Bank is the first high street bank in the UK to sign. Laura Carstensen, chair of the Bank’s Values and Ethics Committee, said: “As the only UK Bank with a customer led ethical policy, which includes a commitment not to finance the extraction or production of fossil fuels, we are delighted to sign the Paris Pledge, to stop the financing of coal powered energy production. The impact of global climate change is an issue that is a major concern to our customers, which is why we don’t provide banking services to any business or organisation whose core activity contributes to the damage being caused to the environment.”
Recent signatories include Triodos Bank and Ecology Building Society (UK), ProCredit Bank and GLS (Germany), Alternative Bank Schweiz (Switzerland), Beneficial State Bank (USA), Merkur Cooperative Bank and Folkesparekassen (Denmark), JAK (Sweden), La Nef (France) and NewB (Belgium).
ASN Bank from the Netherlands, Banco Fie from Bolivia, Ekobanken from Sweden, New Resource Bank from California, and Ethikbank and Umweltbank from Germany were the first signatories in September.
As the UN Climate Summit convened in Paris, a coalition of over 160 organisations including Oxfam, Greenpeace and 350.org has been calling on the world’s banks to end coal financing and focus on energy saving and low carbon investments instead.
- You can find all our coverage from the COP21 Climate Conference in Paris here.