Dear EIB Secretariat General, Board of Directors, and President Werner Hoyer:
Thank you for your leadership last November in implementing an energy lending policy that rules out almost all fossil fuel finance and sets a new global standard. As we face the still-unfolding COVID-19 crisis, we need you to lead by setting out a Climate Bank Roadmap that puts us on the path to a just recovery by building a resilient, equitable, and zero-carbon future:
1) Use COVID-19 stimulus to chart a path to a globally just, resilient, and zero-carbon economy. The EIB should ensure the stimulus packages it contributes to in response to COVID-19 bail out workers and communities, not banks and corporations. In and outside of the EU, the EIB has an important role to play in helping set the stage for a globally just outcome by prioritizing (a) debt cancellation and debt-free finance to lower-income countries and communities, (b) just transition support for fossil fuel dependent workers and communities in low income countries and communities and (c) distributed renewable electricity for communities without energy access.
2) Ensure robust just transition funding and planning for oil, gas, and coal dependent workers and communities. The COVID-19 crisis and oil price crash make it clearer than ever that we need to listen to science and fast-track a managed phase-out of not just coal, but also oil and gas. This can’t happen without making sure workers and communities dependent on these sectors have access to income support, retraining and transfer support, and regional low-carbon economic development plans — as well as a say in how these programs are designed.
3) Close the remaining fossil finance loopholes. The EIB’s Energy Lending policy set an important global precedent for climate banking. However, the EIB should ensure it does not continue to finance gas by committing to not approving more gas projects before the fossil fuels ban enters into force at the end of 2021 and extending the ban to include LNG terminals and other infrastructure for gas transport. Second, the EIB needs to ensure it is not indirectly supporting fossil fuel investments through clients and financial intermediaries by screening partners for oil, gas, and coal exposure and robust decarbonization plans in line with a 1.5°C Paris-aligned trajectory.