With Bank of America being the latest to come out against drilling in the Arctic, every major US bank has made their stand clear that they will not be financing any oil and gas exploration in the Arctic.
The bank has faced increasing pressure from environmentalists, indigenous communities as well as shareholders to refrain from financing fossil fuel exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) due to the potential impact on the indigenous Gwich’in people and endangered species such as polar bears. This news was welcomed by the welcomed by Sierra Club an environmental protection organization.
Earlier this year Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Chase, Wells Fargo and CitiBank had announced commitments not to finance such projects and now Bank of America has followed suit as well.
“There’s been misunderstanding around our position, but we have not historically participated in project finance for oil and gas exploration in the Arctic,” Larry Di Rita, head of public policy for the bank, told Bloomberg. “But given that misinterpretation, we’ve determined that it’s time to codify our existing practice into policy.”