Mar 182016
 
By Catalina von Hildebrand, BankTrack, 18th March 2016

Last weekend, over a thousand Bangladeshis and Indians gathered in Dhaka, Bangladesh, to take part in a four day, 250 kilometre ‘Long March’ to voice a clear message: Save the Sundarbans, the world’s largest mangrove forest.

The Bangladeshi and Indian governments are currently intent on building a coal-fired power plant in the Rampal region 14 kilometres northwest of the Sundarbans, widely known as ‘the lungs of Bangladesh’, and only four kilometres from the designated ecological boundary of the sprawling forest, a World Heritage site and a Ramsar protected wetland. Continue reading »

Feb 172015
 

 By Merel van der Mark, BankTrack, 17 February 2015. 

Despite ongoing rainforest clearance, APRIL and its affiliate companies in the Royal Golden Eagle group do not seem to have any problems in finding money to support their activities.

UPDATE: On 26th February, Santander announced that it would stop financing APRIL until the company implemented “new sustainability measures which address its involvement with deforestation”. 

UPDATE 2: On 6th March, ABN Amro made a similar announcement

Greenpeace last week launched a major campaign against Santander for its role in financing APRIL (Asia Pacific Resources International Limited), the Indonesian pulp and paper producer described by Greenpeace as “Indonesia’s biggest forest destroyer”. Santander has been singled out for good reasons, but it is not alone in financing the company.

Between December 2011 and April 2014, APRIL and its affiliate companies secured at least $1.87 billion in financial support through three syndicated loan deals, which involved 22 known banks.

Continue reading »