Today members of Coal Action Network joined Unfriend Coal and Divest London at the headquarters of international insurance companies AIG and Lloyds to demand bolder action to move away from coal.
Most major insurance companies underwrite various stages of the coal supply-chain, including open-cast coal mines. Anton Lementuev, a resident in the Kuzbass coal-mining region of Russia, commented;
“Wherever opencast coal mining projects occur you find human rights abuses, high incidences of health problems and loss of wildlife and ecology. Here in the Russian Kuzbass region we have all suffered all of this because insurance companies were willing to support more than fifty coal mines. Insurance companies should withdraw their support for the coal industry and mines need to be closed.”
The action coincides with a new report and scorecard published today by Unfriend Coal revealing that while leading insurance companies have already pulled $20 billion out of investments in coal and a growing number are refusing to underwrite new coal projects, more action is urgently needed. In fact most insurers have yet to do anything to prevent the risk of dangerous climate change. The report finds that no U.S. insurer has taken meaningful action, nor have major European companies.