BMO Targets Zero Net Emissions In Its Loans By 2050, Warns Of ‘Sudden’ Change | Invest News
TORONTO (Reuters) – Bank of Montreal on Wednesday said it is targeting net zero issuance in its loan portfolio by 2050 and will double its sustainable financing commitment to C $ 300 billion ($ 237 billion) by 2025, but stressed the need to avoid currency.
The move follows similar commitments from rivals the Royal Bank of Canada and the Toronto-Dominion Bank.
BMO will set an interim target for 2030 and is also targeting a 30% reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in its operations by 2030 compared to 2019, Canada’s fourth lender said in a statement.
“There is no doubt that this transition (to a low-carbon economy) will be disruptive,” BMO CEO Darryl White said in an online address. “While not taking action is not an option, the only answer cannot be a drastic and disruptive change in the individual industries that threaten the livelihoods of the communities we serve. “
BMO’s global asset management unit will also aim to have only net assets under advice by 2050, he said. The bank also said it was creating a climate institute to find solutions to climate change.
Richard Brooks, director of climate finance at advocacy group Stand.Earth, said BMO is “just following the pack” with a climate announcement that “misses the most important point: the need to end the financing the worst carbon emitters – the fossil fuel companies ”.
“You cannot take climate leadership action by continuing to fund the expansion of coal and oil sands projects,” he said in a statement.
Rival Bank of Nova Scotia, in its proxy circular on Wednesday, committed to setting time-bound quantitative targets to reduce GHG emissions in financing transactions, and that once those targets are set, it will make take into account the progress made.
(Reporting by Nichola Saminather; Editing by Nick Macfie)
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