In the nearly five years since Market Forces began, there has not been a more successful and fast-changing year as 2017. Let’s take a look at the year that is rapidly coming to an end.
A big thank you to all our supporters who took part in our campaigns and helped make these wins possible.
1. We got the number of banks that had ruled out funding Galilee Basin coal export projects up to 28, including all of Australia’s “big four” banks.
This includes the unprecedented step of four Chinese banks ruling out finance for Adani’s massive “Carmichael” coal mine.
2. No Australian bank has financed a new coal project for over two years now.
Policies from Westpac and NAB restricted lending to new thermal coal projects, NAB’s being a blanket bank on any new thermal coal mine or expansion, while ANZ and Commonwealth Bank both used their annual general meetings to confirm their exposure to coal was only going to head in one direction: down.
3. We supported shareholders of over 50 companies to challenge directors over their management of climate risk. Check out our video of the highlights (and lowlights) of this year’s annual general meeting season below.
5. Medibank committed to divest from fossil fuels due to the health impacts caused by coal, oil and gas. As of now, Australia’s four biggest health funds either have no investments in fossil fuel companies or are getting out.
It finally feels like the pace of change in the finance and investment sector is starting to catch up to the escalating urgency of the issue. But we know there’s far more to be done.
Adani refuses to give up on its dirty coal mine. There are power stations proposed around the world that need to be stopped, and old dirty ones in Australia that need to be retired and replaced with renewable energy as quickly as possible. We need to make sure the commitments of the major banks on coal are met, and extended to cover oil and gas. For every superannuation fund that is starting to engage on the issue of climate risk, there are several others asleep at the wheel, doing a disservice to their members by investing in unsustainable companies.
Market Forces will be back in 2018 and giving everything we’ve got. How much have we got to give? That’s limited only by the amount of funds we have to support our people and campaigns.
We could be doing so much more and are looking for people to jump on board in 2018 as regular donors so we can take all of these achievements to yet another level next year.
Thanks once again for being a part of our success and here’s to delivering even more positive change in 2018!