World Bank to end support for oil and gas projects

15 Dec 17

The World Bank will end all financial support for new oil and gas projects from 2019, it announced at a climate change summit in Paris on Tuesday.

At the One Planet Summit, World Bank president Jim Yong Kim also announced that the institution was on track to meet its target of 28% of its lending going to climate action by 2020 and to meeting the goals following the Paris Agreement.

In a statement the bank said it “will no longer finance upstream oil and gas” after 2019.

It said: “As a global multilateral development institution, the World Bank Group is continuing to transform its own operations in recognition of a rapidly changing world.”

The bank ended lending for coal-fired power stations in 2010 but has been under pressure from lobby groups to halt the $1bn a year it has been lending for oil and gas in developing countries.

Approximately 1-2% of the group’s $280bn portfolio is accounted for by oil and gas projects.

In response to the announcement, Shelagh Whitley, head of the climate and energy programme at the Overseas Development Institute, said the World Bank was “showing true leadership on climate change”.

“All multilateral and bilateral public finance institutions must now follow the example set by the World Bank Group and end wasteful and dangerous government support to dirty fossil fuels,” she said.

At the One Planet Summit, the UK also pledged a £140m ($186.84m) fund to tackle the effects of climate change on poorer countries. 

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