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World's biggest banks poured billions into fossil fuel expansion despite ‘net zero’ targets

THE world’s biggest banks poured billions of dollars into fossil fuel expansion in 2021, despite their rhetoric about achieving “net zero” carbon emissions, campaigners said today.

Financial sector campaign group BankTrack’s annual report detailed “massive bank support for the world’s worst climate-destroying corporations.”

While most investments were tracked to banks in the United States, the biggest fossil fuel investors in Europe, including Britain, were revealed as Barclays, followed by BNP Paribas and HSBC.

The report said that investment has continued despite the 2016 Paris Agreement on climate change.

Maaike Beenes of BankTrack said: “Climate science has made it inescapably clear that there can be no expansion of fossil fuels if we are to limit global warming to 1.5°C.

“Any serious ‘net zero by 2050’ commitment must also mean excluding all fossil fuel expansion projects and companies from bank financing.”

Alison Kirsch of the Rainforest Action Network said: “Any further expansion of fossil fuels risks locking humanity into generations of climate catastrophe.

“Yet the top fossil fuel clients of the world’s largest banks are still being showered with tens of billions of dollars even as they actively expand drilling, mining, fracking and other extraction unabated.”

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