Commenting on news today (22 February) that RBS is expected to announce underlying losses of £2bn tomorrow, Friends of the Earth Scotland campaigner Mary Church said:

“RBS is the seventh biggest financier of coal electricity and mining worldwide – the coal industry is the biggest emitter of human made CO2, and both the mining and combustion of coal is associated with horrific human rights abuses and environmental degradation around the world.

“Earlier this month, a coalition of over 20 leading experts, investors, NGOs and universities wrote to the Bank of England warning of the dangers of a ‘carbon bubble’, where Britain’s exposure to polluting and environmentally damaging investments might pose a systemic risk to the UK financial system and prospects for long term economic growth.

“This is the fourth year running since the government bailed out RBS with over £65bn of taxpayers’ money that the bank has reported losses. It is clear that business as usual isn’t working, for taxpayers or the environment.

“As today’s Scottish Parliament debate endorses the Green Investment Bank being located in Scotland, we call on RBS to up its game and pull out of risky and environmentally damaging fossil fuel investments, and start injecting significant finances into low carbon technologies.”

ENDS

For media enquiries, please contact: Per Fischer, Press Office, Friends of the Earth Scotland
 t: 0131 243 2719

Notes to Editors

1. Friends of the Earth Scotland briefing to the Scottish Parliament ahead of its debate on the Green Investment Bank:
www.foe-scotland.org.uk/Green_Investment_Bank_SG_Debate

2. An EU vote is anticipated tomorrow (23 February 2012) on a law that would label fuel from tar sands as more environmentally damaging than traditional fuel sources. Between 2007 and 2009, RBS led the underwriting of more than $7.5bn worth of loans to multinational oil companies mining tar sands in Canada. 3. Friends of the Earth Scotland is * Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation * An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland * Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 77 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups – covering every continent. www.foe-scotland.org.uk