Group Therapy For Banks Hooked on Tar Sands

Written by Brant Olson

Topics: Finance, Oil

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After more than a year of denial, RBC may be admitting that it has a problem in the tar sands. Tomorrow, we’ve learned that RBC will host a group of more than a dozen international banks for what it calls a “day of learning”. The meeting comes just eight weeks after our letter to 68 banks signed on to the Equator Principles requesting that they forgo financing in the controversial industrial project.

RBC’s invitation-only meeting clearly aims to develop begin developing a coordinated response among banks to the growing controversy over tar sands financing. We got a peek at a draft agenda featuring Deputy Ministers from Alberta’s Environment and Energy Ministries, tar sands developers, selected environmental groups and at least one “First Nation representative”.

While we didn’t get an invitation to the meeting, volunteers are planning to make our presence known by distributing a special message to bankers in attendance.

We don’t know for sure which banks will show, but we’re expecting most of the 26 ranked in our earlier post on international banks backing the tar sands.

We’re happy to see RBC starting an important conversation in the banking industry, but actions speak louder than words. These banks should stop bankrolling dirty oil and shift those funds into clean energy.

Progress or PR? You decide! Tell us what you think in the comments.

1 Comment For This Post I'd Love to Hear Yours!

  1. Laughlin says:

    I’d like to see a bunch of bank execs having a meeting complete with sparkly fingers, irreverent elephant, shut up shark and so on. I think I pee myself laughing.

    While RBC has signaled that they are willing to sit down and chat, I wonder if this is going to be more of a strategy session on how to fight the enviros on a unified and agreed upon platform… Note: I know nothing about the enviro groups that are in attendance. What are their reputations?

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