March 8, 2017

Under pressure, Westpac give ground on coal finance – Now must rule out Adani coal mine: Australia has called on Westpac to rule out funding the Adani mega coal mine after CEO Brian Hartzer admitted in an Economics Committee hearing that he sees an end to the Bank financing new coal mines.

Under questioning from Greens MP, Adam Bandt, Mr Hartzer accepted that there will be a point where the Bank won’t fund new coal mines or coal expansion.

“This is an enormous shift from the CEO of Westpac to acknowledge there will be a time when the bank will not fund new coal mines. It shows the pressure the bank is under from activists around the country is having an impact,” Finance campaigner, Isaac Astill said.

“Westpac is currently being hit from all sides for their lending practises with a threat to move home-loans and credit cards away from the bank if it invests in Adani’s mega coal project. At the same time the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) recently flagged that company directors will be held personally liable if they don’t consider the climate impacts of their decisions.

“If Westpac is serious about risk management, they will rule out funding Adani’s carbon bomb in Queensland and honour their commitment to keeping global warming below two degrees by refusing to fund any new fossil fuel projects.”