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Bank Fees for Green Debt Surpass Fossil-Fuel Financing

U.S. Currency Production At The Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Photographer: Andrew Harrer

It’s official. For the first time since the unveiling of the Paris climate agreement in 2015, banks earned more fees arranging green-related bond sales and loans than they did helping fossil-fuel companies raise money in the debt markets.

To be sure, the final tally for 2021 was incredibly close. Overall, banks pocketed an estimated $3.4 billion from green-labeled debt deals, compared with $3.3 billion from their work with oil, gas and coal companies, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. For context, in 2020, the split was $1.9 billion for green and $3.7 billion for fossil fuels.