Readers of the Globe and Mail didn’t fall for the bait and switch editorial by Dave McKay last week. The CEO of RBC, Canada’s largest funder of climate chaos, had the gall to pen an article about what other industries should do to help the climate, but made no mention about RBC’s own role backing fossil fuels.

Readers were having none of it. Here was one letter to the editor:

Royal Bank of Canada’s president and chief executive officer Dave McKay writes that we are not tackling climate change fast enough. Indeed. But why does Mr. McKay make no mention that RBC, as part of a larger group of banks, recently invested $1.5-billion in Enbridge, the energy company behind the highly contested Line 5 pipeline?

The International Energy Agency’s latest report plainly states that there is “no need for investment in new fossil fuel supply” in a net-zero 2050 pathway. If RBC were truly in step with tackling the climate emergency, then it would heed the IEA’s advice and come clean on its investments.

Stephen Douglas Toronto

This letter, from student striker and Banking on a Better Future coordinator Evelyn Austin was also submitted:

Dave McKay’s recent climate advice column: “Canada needs a new playbook on climate” was thick with irony, given he is CEO of Canada’s largest financial backer of fossil fuels, RBC.

The IEA and UN have made clear that in order to reach net zero by 2050, fossil fuels must remain in the ground, starting now. Yet RBC’s net zero plan makes no mention of ending financing for fossil fuel extraction, which has made RBC the world’s 5th biggest funder of fossil fuels..

Next Friday, October 29th, actions will be held at dozens of RBC branches across the country and at fossil banks around the world. RBC has no credibility as a climate leader as long as it continues to profit from making climate chaos worse.

Evelyn Austin, Toronto

And a last one published from BC, on Mark Carney’s signing up of RBC and Canada’s other fossil banks to the Net Zero Banking Alliance:

The Net-Zero Banking Alliance? I’ll believe it when I see it.

What my 17-year-old quickly pointed out is how will these banks be held accountable for their “commitment” to shift lending practices away from those that generate greenhouse gas emissions? Indeed, they made no explicit commitment. No enforcement, no penalty – just talk.

What is the point of such an alliance? To make themselves look good, it seems, just another round of corporate greenwashing.

Michelle Sheardown Director, Drawdown BC; North Vancouver

Good on these sharp eyed readers for catching the greenwash!