Despite Canada’s commitment to phase out coal by 2030, Canadian banks and investors gave more than CAD$127 billion to coal companies— CAD$25.5 billion of that to coal companies in Canada

February 15, 2022

TURTLE ISLAND LANDS / SO-CALLED CANADA, UNCEDED ANCESTRAL HOMELANDS OF THOUSANDS OF INDIGENOUS TRIBES —Despite Canada’s commitment to phasing out thermal coal electricity within eight years, Canadian banks are continuing to lend and invest more than USD$100 billion (CAD$127.23 billion) to coal-related companies, including in Canada, according to a new report out of Germany that tracks investment information on thermal coal from 600 financial institutions worldwide. 

The findings, from Urgewald, also show that RBC is one of Canada’s biggest backers of thermal coal, with almost USD$11 billion (CAD$14 billion) of lending and financing to coal related companies, and holding USD$6.5 billion (CAD$8.3 billion) in bonds and shares. 

“While communities across Canada and around the world experience devastating climate impacts from fires to floods, Canada’s fossil banks continue to finance coal-related companies to the tune of roughly $100 billion. In 2022, RBC financing fossil fuels while spouting sustainability is like handing out cigarettes while warning about the dangers of smoking,” said Richard Brooks with “From financing coal, the dirtiest fuel on the planet, to greenwashing attempts to financing Coastal GasLink’s violence against Indigenous land defenders, RBC finds itself on the wrong side of history. Time for RBC to drop coal exposed companies and phase out financing of oil and gas.”

Urgewald’s findings show that RBC is the only financial institution in Canada to make the top three of both Canada rankings in lending and investing in coal related companies.

Lending & Underwriting of Canadian banks to GCEL 2021, in million USD (2019-21)





Non-Canadian Companies

USD 20,326

CAD 25861.68

USD 21,068

CAD 26805.76

USD 41,394

CAD 52667.45

Canadian Companies

USD 4,773

CAD 6072.90

USD 3,531

CAD 4492.65

USD 8,304

CAD 10565.55

Coal-Related Companies

USD 2,969

CAD 3777.59

USD 2,097

CAD 2668.11

USD 5,066

CAD 6445.70

Coal-Related Companies – RBC

USD 609

CAD 774.86

USD 444

CAD 564.92

USD 1,052

CAD 1338.51

Bond- and Shareholdings of Canadian investors to GCEL 2021, in million USD (Nov-21)





Non-Canadian Companies

USD 7,473

CAD 9508.23

USD 31,354

CAD 39893.11

USD 38,827

CAD 49401.34

Canadian Companies

USD 2,371

CAD 3016.73

USD 9,509

CAD 12098.73

USD 11,880

CAD 15115.46

Coal-Related Companies

USD 9,844

CAD 12524.96

USD 40,775

CAD 51879.87

USD 50,619

CAD 64404.83

Coal-Related Companies – RBC

USD 1,203

CAD 1530.63

USD 5,379

CAD 6843.94

USD 6,582

CAD 8374.57

The Global Coal Exit List is maintained by Urgewald. It is the most comprehensive list of coal related and coal exposed companies in the world and relied upon by more than 600 financial institutions to inform their financing and investment of energy sector companies. More info can be found at: 


For more information, please contact:

Lindsay Meiman,,, +1 917 970 2281 

Ognyan Seizov, Urgewald, +49 (0)30 863 2922 61,