Politics

Big banks a letdown in House hearing


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“We are living through a climate crisis today and a commitment to net zero requires a commitment to ending fossil fuel financing,” Tlaib said. “It is important because I want you all to know, at the end, we’re gonna pay the cost of the public health impact. These are people you’re supposed to be serving.” And yet Dimon and his ilk were far more concerned with the so-called “energy mix” talking point pushed by Republicans than making meaningful changes away from fossil fuels. Dimon even said his company was “working with the responsible coal producers,” boasting that they’d at least reduced some of their emissions.

But coal is inherently dirty and there’s no way to ethically continue burning it. Not that Dimon cares about that fact. Speaking about the way the world is handling climate goals, Dimon said “we aren’t getting this one right,” treating dependence on fossil fuels as more of an addiction than anything. “The world needs 100 million barrels effectively of oil and gas every day and we need it for 10 years. To do that we need proper investing in the oil and gas complex,” Dimon said. “Investing in the oil and gas complex is good for reducing CO2.” And I’m gonna stop that quote right in its tracks because it sure isn’t worth the $84.4 million in compensation Dimon made last year, much less the time it takes to type out his remarks.

Rep. Sean Casten, who introduced the Climate Change Financial Risk Act of 2021, couldn’t even get the CEOs to confirm whether or not they were still doing business with the State Financial Officers Foundation, an organization spreading disinformation that was recently outed for its deep ties to fossil fuel companies and sympathetic Republicans. So disinterested in doing the right thing are big banks that their CEOs are even contemplating leaving a crucial net-zero alliance.

Sierra Club Fossil-Free Finance campaign director Ben Cushing said in a statement that this behavior is utterly predictable: “It is unsurprising that dirty energy lobbyists and their political allies are cynically threatening legal action against banks who take climate change seriously. But these threats should be seen for what they are: bad faith attacks that are simply the latest form of climate denialism.”

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