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BNP Paribas to halt funding for new gas projects

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By illuminem

· 2 min read

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🗞️ Driving the news: BNP Paribas, the eurozone’s largest bank, announced it will cease financing new gasfield projects. This decision further limits its funding for fossil fuels, following mounting legal action from campaigners against the bank's support of the sector

  • BNP Paribas has committed to reducing its lending to oil and gas exploration and production companies by 80% for oil and 30% for gas by 2030
  • However, climate activists argue that most of BNP Paribas' support for oil and gas comes through corporate loans and bond underwriting services, which aren't affected by the new policy

Fossil fuel banking league table

🌎 Why it matters for the planet: Activists are urging BNP Paribas to progressively restrict all of its financial services to companies that don't abandon new oil and gas projects

  • The Rainforest Action Network estimated that BNP had provided $20.8bn worth of financing to the oil and gas sector in 2022, more than any other European bank, and a total of $165bn since the Paris climate agreement in 2016

⏭️ What's next: This decision is indicative of the broader shift in the banking industry as it faces increasing pressure to divest from fossil fuels

  • Watch for upcoming shareholder meetings at JPMorgan Chase (May 17th) and Morgan Stanley (May 19th), where environmental activists put forward proposals calling for a plan to phase out financing of fossil fuel projects by 2030

📈 One stat: "This is a big step according to BNP, but a small step for humanity" (Alexandre Poidatz, Oxfam France’s head of advocacy)

⛏️ To dig deeper: Explore how & why radical climate activism is gaining traction

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