Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

For Immediate Release

Contact

Gabby Brown, gabby.brown@sierraclub.org, 914-261-4626

Press Release

With New Morgan Stanley Policy, Bank of America is Only Remaining Major US Bank Without a Commitment Not to Fund Arctic Drilling

New York, NY -

Today, multinational investment bank Morgan Stanley released an updated energy policy that rules out direct financing for oil and gas exploration and development in the Arctic, including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The policy also rules out direct funding for new coal-fired power plants and thermal coal mines, and commits to phase out financing of thermal coal mining companies. However, the policy update fails to rule out funding for fracking, tar sands, or deepwater drilling. 

Today’s announcement leaves Bank of America as the only remaining major US bank not to rule out financing for the destruction of the Arctic Refuge. The other five -- Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup -- have all updated their policies over the last few months, joining more than a dozen international banks

Over the last two years, leaders from the Gwich’in Steering Committee and the Sierra Club have met with representatives from major banks to discuss the threats fossil fuel operations pose to the Arctic Refuge and why action by the financial industry is necessary.

“Investing in drilling in the Arctic Refuge would be a disaster for Indigenous rights, wildlife, and the climate,” said Sierra Club campaign representative Ben Cushing. “Every other major American bank sees that it would also be a disaster for the reputation of any company foolish enough to get involved. Now all eyes are on Bank of America to see if they’ll get the message too or risk the major public backlash that would come with financing the destruction of this unique and sacred place.” 

“Keeping destructive drilling out of the Arctic Refuge is critical to the survival and way of life of my people, and we are thankful that so many major banks are listening to us and taking our human rights seriously,” said Gwich’in Steering Committee Executive Director Bernadette Demientieff. “If Bank of America refuses to commit not to fund Arctic drilling, they’ll have the Gwich’in Nation and the millions of Americans who stand with us to answer to.”   

###

The Sierra Club is the most enduring and influential grassroots environmental organization in the United States. We amplify the power of our 3.8 million members and supporters to defend everyone’s right to a healthy world.

EPA Urged to 'Finish the Job' After Latest Move to Protect Bristol Bay From Pebble Mine

"Local residents, scientists, and the broader public all agree that this is quite simply a bad place for a mine, and it is past time for the EPA to take Pebble off the table permanently," said one activist in Alaska.

Jessica Corbett ·


'Zero Tolerance for Corruption': Grijalva, Porter Demand Answers on Alleged Trump Pardon Bribery Scheme

The Democrats believe a real estate developer donated to a Trump-aligned super PAC in exchange for the pardons of two other men.

Julia Conley ·


Millions of Americans Lack Adequate Health Coverage, But the Pentagon Has a New Nuclear Bomber to Flaunt

"This ominous death machine, with its price tag of $750 million a pop, brings huge profits to Northrop Grumman but takes our society one more step down the road of spiritual death," peace activist Medea Benjamin said of the new B-21 Raider.

Brett Wilkins ·


Betrayal of Railway Workers Ignites Working-Class Fury Toward Biden and Democrats

"Politicians are happy to voice platitudes and heap praise upon us for our heroism throughout the pandemic," said one rail leader. "Yet when the steel hits the rail, they back the powerful and wealthy Class 1 rail carriers every time."

Jessica Corbett ·


With GOP House Control Looming, Pascrell Calls for Swift Release of Trump Tax Records

"Donald Trump tried to hide his tax returns from our oversight but after 1,329 days we have finally obtained the documents," said the New Jersey Democrat. "We should review and release them."

Kenny Stancil ·

Common Dreams Logo