NAB confirms it will update stance on polluting oil and gas

11 November 2020

Today NAB released its sustainability report, failing to take the minimum steps needed now to align the bank’s finance activity with the Paris Agreement, while confirming it will update its stance on funding the dirty oil and gas sector by next year.

NAB’s funding for the oil and gas sector is wildly inconsistent with its stated support for the Paris Agreement.

From Jan 2016 – Dec 2019, NAB loaned $1.2 billion to 10 large Australian companies whose business plans rely on the failure of the Paris Agreement, and $1.1 billion to 12 projects that expand the fossil fuel industry enabling the release of 2.5 billion tonnes of CO2, many of them oil or gas projects.(1)

This is despite there being no room for new oil and gas projects if we’re to achieve the Paris Agreement, according to mainstream climate science.

TAKE ACTION! As NAB considers its position on oil and gas, tell it that 1.5 degrees means no expanding the fossil fuel industry!

With regards to the update, NAB’s CEO Ross McEwan told a House of Representatives Economics Committee:

“I think we’ve got a lot of work to do to have a look at that whole issue and its impact across all of Australia and all of the constituent parts, including what energy sources Australia needs to have.”

Ross McEwan, CEO, National Australia Bank

McEwan’s words follow warnings in August from leading scientists at Australian universities about the role of gas in a Paris-aligned economy:

To meet the upper Paris goal (‘well below 2C’), we must achieve net zero emissions by 2040-2050. This requires a rapid phase-out of existing fossil fuel infrastructure, leaving no room for expansion of the gas industry.

25 leading scientists at Australian universities

Last week, NAB said it “expected” to exit thermal coal mining by 2030, the latest point that is considered aligned with the climate goals of the Paris Agreement. However, at the same time, the bank inexplicably retained its commitment to exit the sector five years too late, by 2035.


Take action

Tell NAB 1.5°C means no expansion of the oil and gas industry