Stop the Destruction of Indian Rainforests for Coal Mining

Target: Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan

Goal: End funding of rainforest-destroying coal mining practices

The tropical rainforests of India are home to some of the world’s most spectacular and endangered wildlife, including elephants, tigers, and gibbons. Much of India’s natural forest cover has already been displaced by human activities, making the forests which remain all the more precious. But now Bank of America – a US bank that, ironically, claims to be committed to sustainability – has agreed to finance a project that threatens some of the last stands of forest in India.

Bank of America has agreed to act as the merchant broker for the sale of $1 billion worth of shares for Coal India, a company engaged in clearing Indian rainforests to make room for coal mining. Coal India is the biggest coal company on the planet, and its practices have been linked to destruction of critical habitat for tigers and other endangered species. According to the Rainforest Action Network and Greenpeace, Coal India’s mining activity also displaces communities of people who depend on forests for survival, and the company employs child labor. No US corporation that claims to care about social and environmental responsibility should allow itself to be linked to such practices.

In the past, Bank of America has made commitments to avoid funding the destruction of endangered forests, and to helping finance the global shift to renewable energy. By severing ties with Coal India, and refusing to finance the destruction of critical ecosystems for coal mining, Bank of America can do the right thing and show that its sustainability policies are more than just idle talk. Sign below to urge Bank of America to immediately cut ties with Coal India.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Moynihan,

We, the undersigned, urge Bank of America to immediately cut all financial support for Coal India, and reaffirm your commitments to forest protection and renewable energy. Coal India is a company engaged in clearing some of India’s last remaining tropical forests, all in order to mine the dirtiest fuel in the world. As if that were not enough, Coal India has been linked to human rights abuses including the use of child labor. No company that cares about social and environmental responsibility should be supporting these kinds of practices, and we urge you to cut ties with Coal India immediately.

Bank of America has stated that it supports sustainable development and renewable energy. Why, then, would your company agree to finance the sale of $1 billion worth of sales for a bad corporate player like Coal India? This move undermines your company’s stated policies on forests and renewable energy, and will hurt Bank of America’s credibility. Please act to correct this grave mistake before the consequences become irreversible.

We urge you to show that Bank of America’s sustainability commitments are more than just empty talk, by withdrawing any financial support for Coal India and refusing to fund companies engaged in destructive coal mining. Do the right thing for your customers and the planet, and stop funding rainforest destruction.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Ganesh raghunathan via Flickr

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