BNY Mellon severed ties with one of the world’s most controversial coal mines after the Financial Times revealed that the bank’s Australian branch was preparing to help finance the Carmichael project in Queensland.
The US investment bank released a statement Friday saying it had reviewed its relationship with Adani Group, the Indian conglomerate that is developing the Carmichael mine, and had “decided to resign from all legacy transactions with Adani in Australia.” The bank added that it would not pursue future transactions with Adani in Australia.
Adani has struggled to attract bank funding for the Carmichael coal mine, which is expected to produce around 10 million tonnes of coal per year, and has sparked protests around the world.
Earlier this year, a contractor from Carmichael said he had not obtained insurance for the project due to environmental concerns.
An FT investigation into bank financing of fossil fuel projects this week found that BNY’s Australian affiliate, BTA Institutional Services, was preparing to work with Adani on the Carmichael project.
At the same time, the bank was in talks to join the net zero climate initiative of former Bank of England Governor Mark Carney, which was heavily promoted in this week’s COP26 climate talks. in Glasgow.
Emails and documents viewed by the FT describe BTA as the “financier” of the project and “the party lending money to Adani”. BNY replied that although contracts had been prepared citing BTA’s involvement, they had not been signed.
He also said he was not funding the project but was providing “administrative services” to Adani in Australia, including as a security administrator.
“BNY Mellon has determined that this activity is not aligned with our ESG principles,” the bank said in a statement announcing its decision to sever ties.
The bank added that it would continue to honor its contractual obligations during the course of transactions and until the end of its role. He did not disclose the other services he offered to Adani outside of Australia.
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