Coal, unfortunately, is the world’s largest source of electricity generation. Coal-fired power plants also release tons of carbon emissions and other pollutants into the air we breathe. These emissions contribute to climate change and have been linked to a number of adverse health conditions. Ash from coal-fired power plants, for example, can pollute natural environments, as well as contaminate drinking water.
As part of BNP Paribas, Bank of the West has a policy in place that restricts the financing of coal-fired power generation plants. Since 2017, we have not financed any new coal-fired power plant projects and we also do not finance coal-fired power plants that are not actively involved in the transition to sustainable energy production. Mandatory criteria for financing approval includes, but is not limited to, publication of environmental performance spanning air emissions, water consumption, ash generation, and disposal methods; and publication of safety records, subject to credit approval.
For more about how we restrict our financing of coal-fired power generation, please see the policy document linked here.