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As Global Divestment Movement Gains Momentum, World Bank Will Stop Funding Oil and Gas Projects

Wells Fargo has an opportunity this week to follow suit.

WASHINGTON - Today, the World Bank announced that it will stop financing oil and gas exploration and extraction starting in 2019

The announcement comes as financial institutions have come under increased scrutiny over their funding of dirty fossil fuels that are driving the climate crisis.

Axa, one of the world’s biggest financial services companies, also announced today that it is dumping investments and ending insurance for tar sands pipelines.

Major American banks like Wells Fargo have faced particular pressure over their funding of TransCanada, the company behind the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. The banks have a set of loans out to the pipeline company totaling $1.5 billion, which are set to expire this Friday. Sierra Club members and supporters alone have sent over 150,000 letters to Wells Fargo calling on them not to renew these loans and to divest from fossil fuels.

In response, Sierra Club Beyond Dirty Fuels campaign director Kelly Martin released the following statement:

“Major financial institutions like the World Bank are pulling their support of fossil fuel projects because they recognize that the pressure to do so is only going to increase and because they are bad investments. Wells Fargo has a choice to make: they can get with the program and take a meaningful step forward by pulling their support from Keystone XL, or they can further tarnish their suffering reputation by sinking more money into the dirty, dangerous fossil fuels of the past.”

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The Sierra Club is the oldest and largest grassroots environmental organization in the United States. It was founded on May 28, 1892 in San Francisco, California by the well-known conservationist and preservationist John Muir, who became its first president. The Sierra Club has hundreds of thousands of members in chapters located throughout the US, and is affiliated with Sierra Club Canada.

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