BNP Paribas to stop doing business with shale companies

BNP Paribas, France’s largest listed bank, has announced that it will no longer do business with companies working in shale oil or gas and it transitions to supporting renewable energy projects.

The bank will stop working with and financing any companies or projects whose principal business activity is in shale oil or any new shale projects.

BNP will also not finance any oil or gas exploration or production projects located in the Artic region.

A statement said the company is committing its support to the renewable energy sector and is targeting any clients working in the energy transition away from fossil fuels.

Jean-Laurent Bonnafé, BNP Paribas CEO said: “We’re a long-standing partner to the energy sector and we’re determined to support the transition to a more sustainable world. As an international bank, our role is to help drive the energy transition and contribute to the decarbonisation of the economy.

“As we have announced, we’re committed to working with and supporting those energy sector partners who have decided to make environmental issues a central part of their business policy.”

The latest announcement follows a decision to withdraw support from the coal industry and increase total financing for renewable energy to €15 billion by 2020 as well as setting aside €100 million for investment in start-ups working on innovative solutions for energy transition.

The BNP statement said that the bank is committed to bringing its investment activities in line with the International energy Agency’s scenario which keeps global warming below 2°C by the end of the century.

The new policy will see BNP stop business relations with any company engaged in exploration, production, distribution, marketing or trading of oil and gas from shale and tar sands.

The group will also halt any financing of LNG terminals or pipelines that carry products derived from shale or tar sands as well.