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Greenpeace’s response to Dutch Insurance company, Aegon, divesting from tar sands

Amsterdam, The Netherlands – WEBWIRE

Insurance company Aegon (the 19th largest in the world) has announced it is no longer investing in tar sands oil. The financial company will also sell its investments in pipeline companies Transcanada and Enbridge in Canada and the US.

Greenpeace calls on financial institutions to stop investing in tar sands, the dirtiest oil in the world. Aegon is now withdrawing €530 million in investments from the tar sands.

“We are very pleased with Aegon’s decision. This is an important signal to investors and the oil industry,” says Kees Kodde, campaigner at Greenpeace Netherlands. “Now it is up to other banks to follow Aegon’s example and quit the dirtiest oil in the world.”

More than 150 Indigenous nations and tribes, together with environmental organizations, have expressed their opposition to the transport of tar sands oil through their territories and the pipelines planned in the US and Canada. These pipelines are intended to export tar sands oil from Canada to the US and China.

The extraction of tar sands oil comes at the expense of globally significant forests and causes extreme levels pollution. Numerous Indigenous Peoples and local communities in the US and Canada are against the planned pipelines because of land rights issues, climate concerns and oil spills that threaten to contaminate drinking water.

Thanks to a court decision, the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline in the US has been temporarily halted. Construction on Enbridge’s Line 3 construction could begin later this year.

Aegon will stop investing in oil companies that produce 30% or more of their total production from tar sands, and in pipeline companies which are involved in tar sands oil. In total, Aegon had invested 530 million euros worldwide in this sector. Aegon is adding eleven companies involved in the Canadian tar sands to its exclusion list as of today.

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