Netherlands' Rabobank wants no ties with the shale gas industry and says it will not give loans to companies engaged in extracting the resource, DutchNews.nl reported on Monday.
The Rabobank group, which describes itself as "one of the world’s most leading, sound and sustainable financial institutions," also refuses to lend money to farmers who rent their lands to shale gas companies.
The move is motivated by environmental and social implications of hydraulic fracturing which the bank says are not yet fully understood.
"Here the state owns mineral rights," a spokesperson told the Dutch newspaper deVerdieplng Trouw, referring to Dutch legislation. "In the US landowners own also mineral rights. Their Dutch colleagues do not have the same right."
The company's sustainable banking policy is guided by principles related to animal welfare, human and labour rights and the armaments industry – in which the financial institution also does not invest.
Creative Commons image by: Bogdan Migulski