The World Bank has
just recently commissioned a report which could recommend that they consider
pulling out of financing all coal and oil projects in developing countries,
something which if recommended strongly may cause shareholder unrest.
draft report has already been circulated to an expert panel advising
them to phase out funding all oil projects by 2008, and fund no more
coal mining projects. It advises that the bank should add on what they
call a "shadow price" of the damage caused by
greenhouse gas emissions when assessing the costs and benefits of projects.
also calls on the bank to step up funding for renewable energy projects,
citing damage from climate change.
This would be a philosophy Green Isp
support as most companies do not take environmental impact into account
when they work out their wealth. Also GDP, if adjustments were made to
take in to account environmental impact , would not represent true wealth
and standard of living for the benefactors.
Commissioned by the banks president
James Wolfensohn and named The Extractive Industries Review, it will
reveal its recommendations immanently.
Funding from the World Bank is
considered to be a major factor in giving the Thumbs Up to many oil and
gas projects, which are often opposed by environmentalist groups.
Woicke, the head of the IFC(sister company of World Bank), said recently
that "financial contributions were important
in giving the bank leverage over a project".
But if the bank still
enjoyed working in this field, it would be better placed to give constructive
advice rather than funding.
Two of the bank's more
controversial projects of recent years, the Chad/Cameroon oil pipeline
and the Caspian oil project, have been shoved through by management at
the bank and its shareholder countries, in particular the US, against
environmentalist campaigners outspoken and serious opposition.
as Friends of the Earth accused the World Bank of trying to exert undue
influence over the whole process, and of giving too large a voice to
The Extractive Industries Review, which was
launched in 2001, has held consultative meetings with NGOs and business
representatives. And was intended to give advice to the World Bank on
its involvement in oil, gas and mining projects throughout the world.
Salomé, who represented the bank and
was was appointed as secretary to the review, recently left after complaints
that the process was being hijacked by the bank.
The review was designed
to learn from the World Commission on Dams farce, which reported in 2000.
commission, following a similar process to this World Bank on coal and
oil projects, outlined an agreement on guidelines for building dams in
the developing world. But many of its recommendations were not adopted
by the Bank or developing country governments.