Bank Of America Chair Supports Sustainable Energy For Some at Rio+20

Cross-posted from the Understory

As governmental negotiations are faltering at the “Rio Plus 20” talks in Brazil, the Sustainable Energy for All initiative (SE4All) announced major commitments to sustainable energy from a wide variety of stakeholders, including developing nation governments, corporations and the rock band Linkin Park.

Co-Chaired by Bank of America Chairman Chad Holliday, SE4All announced that Ghana would develop a national energy action plan that “to support capacity-development and innovative financing mechanisms.” Barbados plans to increase its use of renewable energy to 29%. Meanwhile, members of Linkin Park launched the “Power the World” campaign, which aims to deliver one million signatures to world leaders at Rio+20 urging an end to energy poverty.

In SE4All’s press release Holliday says:

“I believe this initiative is one of the great opportunities of our time. It provides solutions for some of the toughest global challenges we face — poverty, inequality, energy security, climate change and environmental protection. These commitments demonstrate that we can make tremendous progress when all key stakeholders — developed and developing countries, private companies and civil society groups — work together in common cause for the common good.”

But as Holliday helps move Ghana and Barbados towards a clean energy grid, the company he guides through these tumultuous economic and environmental times, Bank of America, remains the largest funder of coal in the United States. The United States maintains one of the largest carbon footprints on the planet with more than 35% of the U.S. electricity grid powered by coal.

Sustainable Energy For All Co-Chairs Chad Holliday & Kandeh Yumkella

Bank of America finances some of the worst coal mining companies responsible for ecological crimes upon the mountains and people of Appalachia. The bank is a top financier for the world’s largest coal companies who are now developing mega-terminals in the Pacific Northwest to stem floundering profits by shipping Powder River Basin coal overseas to Asian markets.

Can someone let me know where Bank of America’s investment portfolio falls into the framework of “Sustainable Energy for All?”

Bank of America is responsible for some of the worst existing and emerging environmental catastrophes on the planet. But as SE4All moves forward with clean energy and sustainability commitments to many parts of the world, we’ve yet to see a real commitment to reducing the carbon footprint of Bank of America’s investment portfolio.

 


About


Scott Parkin is a Senior Campaigner with Rainforest Action Network and organizes with Rising Tide North America. He has worked on a variety of campaigns around climate change, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, mountaintop removal, labor issues and anti-corporate globalization. Originally from Texas, he now lives in San Francisco.

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