Singapore: OCBC and DBS announce new policy to stop funding coal-fired power plants due to climate concerns

Author: Robin Hicks, EcoBusiness, Published on: 21 April 2019

"OCBC is Southeast Asia's first bank to rule out funding new coal power plants,"18 April 2019

Singapore’s OCBC Bank is the first banking giant in Southeast Asia to rule out financing new coal-fired power plants.

...[T]he bank’s chief executive Samuel Tsien said the company would no longer fund new coal-fired power plants in any country.

“We hope that by doing this, we are encouraging the governments to do facilitating, arrangements for the countries to move from coal to renewable [energy],” said Tsien.

OCBC is currently involved in funding two coal power plants in Vietnam, but these projects will be the last that the bank will finance due to contract obligations, Tsien said.

...[R]ival DBS announced that it would also stop funding new coal power.

In a statement released on Thursday, DBS said that after taking into consideration reports such as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) study released in November, a stark warning of the urgent need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, it would “cease financing new coal-fired power plant in any market regardless of the efficiency of technologies used, after honouring our existing commitments.”

The last of DBS’ commitments to coal power plants is likely to be completed by 2021.

OCBC and DBS join a growing list of finance institutions around the world retreating from coal as concern grows over the role the fossil fuel plays in exacerbating climate change. Burning coal is the single biggest contributor to man-made greenhouse gas emissions.


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Related companies: DBS Bank OCBC Bank