The Coal Companies Watchlist

What and Why?

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Are coal companies moving away from coal?

Engagement has become a buzzword. While many financial institutions loudly advocate for the need to engage coal companies as an alternative to cutting off financial support, a small but growing number of banks and investors are adopting exclusion policies while also demanding coal companies adopt coal phase-out plans.

Accountability is going be key for the success of this strategy, given that more than 500 companies are still developing new coal projects and less than 5% of coal companies have set coal exit dates. Has engagement proven successful so far? When, and how? And what are the red lines to ensure companies adopt 1.5°C aligned coal phase out plans?

To answer these questions, Reclaim Finance has developed the Coal Companies Watchlist, a tool to assess whether coal companies have credible plans to phase out coal. The table below analyzes coal phase-out plans for a sample of 47 companies (see our methodology for more details about sample selection).

The Coal Companies Watchlist

Play with the filters to select the coal companies of your choice and compare them. More detailed information about each coal phase-out plan can be accessed through the dropdown menus. The Coal Companies Watchlist is updated on a continuous basis.
Last update: 15 December 2021.

The Analysis Grid

The 10 criteria laid out in Urgewald and Reclaim Finance’s previous report are grouped in four broader categories, permitting a ranking of coal phase-out plans by their overall level of credibility.

Categories are listed in descending order, from the most to the least significant – with companies still developing coal falling into the most regressive red category, while those not developing coal but failing to adopt a timely coal exit are placed in the orange category, and so on.

Companies with no coal expansion plans, adequate phase-out dates and a commitment to shut down assets are categorized as having credible coal phase-out plans. Issues related to the just transition, lobbying and investor-state disputes do not influence the final credibility assessment, as they heavily depend on a subjective and evolving analysis. However, this does not mean they are not important, and investors should absolutely hold every company accountable on these matters.

Companies that are not engaged in coal expansion and have precise commitment to phase-out by 2030 and 2040 but do not guarantee asset closures, instead opting for sales or conversion of retrofitting, are categorized as having a partially credible phase-out plan, with major weaknesses on their exit strategy.

Companies that are no longer expanding but are planning a phase-out calendar that is not consistent with the 2030 and 2040 timelines, and/or do not present asset by-asset closures dates are categorized as having a rough first draft of a phase-out plan that is structurally flawed and cannot be considered credible.

Companies that are still expanding their coal capacity are not even recognizing the imperative to exit coal. Therefore, we consider that such companies do not have any form of credible phase-out commitment, let alone a proper phase-out plan.

All data points have been sourced from publicly available documents (annual and corporate sustainability reports, cross-checked with press articles and third-party analyses and data).

Read the full methodology