Export-Import Bank: Financing Dirty Fossil Fuels, Losing the Clean Energy Race
Sierra Club, 2014
Despite pledges by the Obama Administration to phase out fossil fuel subsidies both domestically and internationally, the U.S. Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im), a federally-funded agency, has provided $14.5 billion to destructive fossil fuel projects abroad over the past two years alone. Following the announcement of the Climate Action Plan in July 2013, the Bank has taken strides to reduce its financing of coal plants. The Thai Binh 2 coal-fired power plant in Vietnam, a 1,200 megawatt plant, was rejected last July, shortly after the CAP announcement. Then in November, the Bank finalized its implementation of the CAP by announcing a new emissions performance standard (EPS), one of the strongest in the world.
Despite these advances, Ex-Im is now considering yet another enormous coal plant – India’s 3,960 megawatt Tilaiya UMPP. This project is being considered as a result of toxic legislative riders attached to appropriations requests that have momentarily rolled back the Bank’s ability to implement the CAP. Now, thanks to these extreme moves in Congress, the Bank is on the verge of backtracking on what little progress it has made to transition beyond coal to clean energy.