Oil Change International, Rainforest Action Network, BankTrack, Indigenous Environmental Network, Reclaim Finance, Sierra Club, Urgewald.
This report, Banking on Climate Chaos 2023, analyzes fossil fuel financing and policies from the world’s 60 largest commercial and investment banks. We reveal that fossil fuel financing from the world’s 60 largest banks has reached nearly USD 5.5 trillion in the seven years since the adoption of the Paris Agreement, with $673 billion in 2022 alone. It also reveals that the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 gave fossil fuel companies a chance to rake in record profits totaling USD 4 trillion.
For the first time in four years, JP Morgan Chase was not the world’s worst funder of fossil fuels, ousted by the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) which provided fossil fuel companies with USD 42.1 billion in 2022. However, JP Morgan Chase remains the worst culprit for fossil fuel financing since the adoption of the Paris Agreement, totaling $434 billion in the seven years since. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) ranks as the worst among Asian banks, financing $29.5 billion, and French bank BNP Paribas is the worst actor in Europe, financing $20.8 billion in 2022.
The report also assesses bank financing for top companies in certain spotlight fossil fuel sectors, and highlights the communities fighting projects in these sectors that threaten their lives and livelihoods.
- Tar sands oil: The top tar sands companies received $21.0 billion in financing in 2022, led by the biggest Canadian banks, who provided 89% of those funds. TD, RBC, and Bank of Montreal top the list.
- Arctic oil and gas: Chinese banks ICBC, Agricultural Bank of China, and China Construction Bank led financing for Arctic oil and gas, which totaled $2.9 billion for the top companies in this sector in 2022. 26 banks are still financing Arctic oil and gas, including U.S. banks JPMorgan Chase, Citi, and Bank of America.
- Amazon oil and gas: Spanish bank Santander leads financing for companies extracting in the Amazon biome, followed closely by U.S. bank Citi. Financing totaled $769 million in 2022.
- Fracked oil and gas: Finance for fracking companies totaled $67.0 billion dollars in 2022, which is an 8% increase over the financing reported in 2021 for the top fracking companies. This increase is especially disturbing given the extreme methane emissions from fracking. RBC and JPMorgan Chase are the top financiers of fracked oil and gas for 2022 and since the Paris Agreement.
- Offshore oil and gas: European banks BNP Paribas, Crédit Agricole, and Japanese bank SMBC Group top the list of worst financiers of offshore oil and gas for 2022. Financing totaled $34 billion in 2022.
- Coal mining: Of the $13.0 billion in financing that went to the world’s 30 largest coal mining companies, 87% was provided by banks located in China, led by China CITIC Bank, China Everbright Bank, and Industrial Bank.
- Coal power: Of the financing to the world’s top 30 companies in coal power, 97% of financing was provided by Chinese banks. These companies, which have plans to expand coal power capacity, received $29.5 billion from the profiled banks in 2022.
In the nearly two years since the International Energy Agency announced that developing new oil and gas fields would restrict the chances of limiting global warming below 1.5°C, most banks have failed to adopt stringent exclusion policies for companies expanding fossil fuels. All Canadian and U.S. banks are still at square one when it comes to oil and gas expansion policies. Under their current policies, they can continue to support companies developing new oil and/or gas projects and also provide project and dedicated finance to most new extraction.