Group calls on Gov. Wolf to veto proposal
By Clean Water & Conservation Advocate Stephanie Wein, PennEnvironment. For Immediate Release Wednesday, November 18, 2020
PHILADELPHIA– PennEnvironment called on Gov. Tom Wolf Tuesday to veto a newly passed bill that would redefine the term ‘recycling’ in a way that benefits the fossil fuel industry and threatens the health of Pennsylvanians and our environment. Earlier in the day, the Pennsylvania State Senate passed House Bill 1808, which would promote burning plastics and turning them into crude oil and jet fuels under the guise of “recycling.” HB 1808 would also weaken pollution control standards for facilities where plastic-to-fuel processes take place, while incentivizing the production of more single-use plastic.
PennEnvironment’s Clean Water & Conservation Advocate Stephanie Wein released the following statement in response:
“Governor Wolf should stop Pennsylvania from setting a horrible precedent by misleadingly defining plastic combustion and other practices promoted by HB 1808 as ‘advanced recycling.’ Just like calling a hot dog ‘sushi’ doesn’t make it sushi, calling burning plastics ‘recycling’ doesn’t change what it is: just another way to burn fossil fuels.
This bill classifies expensive, polluting processes such as pyrolysis and gasification that convert plastics to liquid fuel products like fossil-fuel derived jet fuel or crude oil as recycling. We shouldn’t waste time and money on these types of flawed and potentially dangerous waste management approaches. Instead, we should implement safer, proven strategies such as passing policies that limit the use of single-use plastics in the first place.
We know that burning fossil fuels lead to global-warming carbon emissions. The plastics-to-fuel facilities enabled by HB 1808 will only exacerbate our climate-related problems. One project currently being proposed in Pennsylvania would emit an estimated 1.75 million tons of global warming pollution annually – the emissions equivalent of 300,000 cars on the road.
A report from BankTrack shows the amount various banks have lent to fossil fuel industries over the past few years. No wonder the frackers won’t go away! Download the report here.
A recent video The Easiest Change You Can Make | In Depth recommends people switch to credit unions, which help local people rather than global polluters.
Excerpt from the BankTrack web site:
Banking on Climate Change 2019 is the tenth annual fossil fuel report card and the first ever analysis of funding from the world’s major private banks for the fossil fuel sector as a whole.
Expanded in scope, the report adds up lending and underwriting to 1,800 companies across the coal, oil and gas sectors globally over the past three years. The report also tracks fossil fuel expansion by aggregating data on which banks are financing the 100 companies most aggressively expanding fossil fuels.
Banking on Climate Change 2019 reveals that the four biggest global bankers of fossil fuels are all U.S. banks – JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citi and Bank of America. Barclays of England, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) of Japan and RBC of Canada are also massive funders in this sector. Notably, JPMorgan Chase is by far the worst banker of fossil fuels and fossil fuel expansion – and therefore the world’s worst banker of climate change. Since the Paris Agreement, JPMorgan Chase has provided $196 billion in finance for fossil fuels, 10% of all fossil fuel finance from the 33 major global banks.
JPMorgan’s volume of finance for fossil fuels 2016-2018 is a shocking 29% higher than the second placed bank, Wells Fargo. The bank stands out even more from its peers in its volume of financing for the top companies expanding fossil fuel extraction and infrastructure: since the Paris climate agreement, JPMorgan Chase’s $67 billion in finance for the expanders is fully 68% higher than that of Citi, in distant second place.
With Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs in 11th and 12th places respectively in the fossil fuel financing league table, all of the big six U.S. banking giants are in the top dirty dozen bankers of climate change. Together, U.S. banks account for 37% of all global fossil fuel financing. Collectively, the U.S. banks are the biggest source of funding for fossil fuel expansion since the Paris Agreement was adopted…