Aisling Bea and Emma Thompson call on UK banks to stop supporting fossil fuels.
By: Andreea Dibo, Health & Environment, The Pawprint
Celebrities like Emma Thompson, Stephen Fry, and Aisling Bea are urging the five largest High Street banks in the UK to stop funding new oil, gas, and coal projects.
It comes in response to accusations that HSBC, Barclays, Santander, NatWest, and Lloyds, despite making environmental commitments, are backing “fossil fuel expansion.”
But HSBC and Barclays claimed to be assisting their customers in reducing emissions.
According to analysis by the environmental organization Rainforest Action Network, HSBC, Barclays, Santander, NatWest, and Lloyds contributed over $368 billion (£298 billion) to the fossil fuel industry between 2016 and 2021.
It further stated that over the same time frame, the lenders provided $141 billion in financing to the 50 businesses making the largest investments in oil and gas projects.
“This month it was discovered that HSBC had given $340 million to a company launching a new coal mine in Germany,” the statement read.
The initiative, which has the support of musicians Brian Eno and actors Mark Rylance, calls on people to sign an open letter requesting that banks stop directly funding initiatives that increase the use of fossil fuels or sever ties with clients who do.
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