the past couple of years, several of the biggest banks in the world
have released policies and statements regarding investments in the
mountaintop removal coal mining industry. According to the MTR report card that
RAN released earlier this year, the biggest banks in the financial
sector have begun to recognize MTR as a risky and socially
irresponsible investment. However, two banks have emerged as major
financiers of MTR companies that other banks won't touch: PNC and UBS.
PNC is a small Pennsylvania based bank that, according to it's website,
provides "deposit, lending, cash management and investment services to
more than 5 million consumer and small business customers across 15
states and the District of Columbia."
While PNC claims to be "the greenest bank in the business" they
have provided financing within the past 2 1/2 years to 6 out of the top
8 corporate MTR companies, including Massey Energy. During this period,
PNC provided over $130 million to MTR companies in bond deals alone.
"greenest bank in the business" lacks a robust environmental policy,
appears to have no corporate social responsibility (CSR) or
environmental staff team and has not responded to any communication
from RAN. Needless to say, PNC has not made any reference to
mountaintop removal in any of its press releases or responsibility
is not alone in their continued financing of MTR. UBS is another bank
that has so far refused to keep up with their financial sector
colleagues and move away from financing the practice.
the Swiss are very proud and protective of their Alps, Swiss-based UBS
is apparently comfortable with destroying American mountains. UBS
provided over $760 million in bond deals to 5 of the top 8 corporate
MTR companies, including Massey Energy, in the past 2 1/2 years.
and UBS are outliers in the banking industry because of their refusal
to acknowledge mountaintop removal coal mining as a risky investment.
Both these banks need to hear from activists demanding that they stop
bankrolling the destruction of Appalachia. If you have the time or
inclination, take a look at both of these banks' websites and see if
they have branches or offices near you and pay them a visit! Let us know how it goes and hopefully these two banks will soon join the rest of the banking industry in moving away from the destructive MTR industry.
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